My name is Joaquin
I am ten thousand years old
I am the living embodiment
of all of those that came before me.
I am the sacred picture of the past,
but I’m also the golden promise of the future
Throughout the years
countless tragedies have been written
in the book of my life.
Century after century
I had to endure the humiliation
of having my individual dignity beaten down.
Shackles of oppression had been strapped
around my head and limbs.
Extorting constant pain and misery
through the whole of me.
Chains of despair violently shaking me
and dragging me down.
Binding me close to the ground
Keeping me there
for thousands of cycles of the moon.
Colonization and inferiority
almost became part of my blood.
The golden rays of the sun were prohibited
from ever shinning on me.
The abundant riches of the soil were barred
from nourishing me.
My humble being was fed nothing,
but malice and rancor
during this dark period of time.
Yet my heart has always remained pure
and my spirit has always stayed strong.
My creed has not changed
My faith has not wavered
My strength has not faded
My conviction has grown to a fever pitch
of furious magnitude.
My determination has exploded
to the size of a full-fledged tornado.
Its shredding winds resonating thru time
and gradually laying out the path
to my liberation.
I am ready to rise
I am ready to surge
I am ready to improve the chances of my generation
I am ready to lay claim to the throne
that for so long has eluded my forefathers.

My name is Joaquin

The world has become distorted
but my conscience has not.
I will always be Joaquin
I will always live smack between the fissure
of two worlds.
I will always live under the constant exploration
of my double consciousness.
I was born in the land of the Utes
The top of the greatest mountain range
in North America.
The mighty and monumental Rockies
My Father’s Nahuatl blood boils thru my veins
like steaming liquid hydrogen.
The same liquid hydrogen
that burns inside the boosters
of a rocket blasting out of earth’s atmosphere.
It is this violent combustion of fuel and fire
that makes me who I am.
Yes I have always been Joaquin
Yes I have roamed these lands
for thousands of years.

I am the emperor Moctezuma
I am Aztec
I am Mexika
I am pure in blood
Tenochtitlan will always be my home,
but Aztlan will always be my origin
and my destiny.
My demise at the hands of the invaders
was not the end of me.
My past will one day become my future
when the flowering wars generate
the final outcome of balance
and righteousness.

I am Netzahualcoyotl from Texcoco
I am poet and philosopher
I am the gatekeeper of all knowledge
I am the emissary of structured doctrine
and raw dogma.
The sweet lifeblood
of all flourishing civilizations.
I am the pupil constantly learning
about the guiding principles of life.
Our beginner’s spirit
should never be forgotten.
Our most sacred piece of wisdom
is the recognition of our own ignorance.

I am the great ruler Kaknal Ahau from Uxmal
I am Mayan chief
Solid, stout, and decisive
Heir and owner of thousands of years
of acumen and understanding.
I inherited true sanctuaries of intellect
and theory.
Countless libraries and archives
that inspired me to become a student.
I wanted to learn
and learning I became a teacher.
I became the demarcation point
between human life
and the fluid motion of earth’s energy.

My name is Joaquin

I am Dolores Hidalgo Guanajuato
My ears heard the ringing of the bells
and my heart felt the beauty of freedom.
The day Miguel Hidalgo screamed to the four winds
and proclaimed Mexican Independence.

I am Leon de los Aldama Guanajuato
My peasant roots never stopped me from dreaming
Dreaming about the day when
I could roam free in my own land.
Dreaming about reaching the Promised Land
without having to wait for my passing.
I grew tired of the promises of paradise
in the afterlife that the church always preached.
I never desired a paradise
I just wanted my living hell to end at once
Lo que sea que truene
I joined Miguel Hidalgo
at the highlands of the Bajio.
Where we started our march
to the city of Guanajuato.
I was there when El Pipila punched thru
the fortress of the Gachupines
at the Alhondiga de Granaditas
The day the conquistadors were finally
thrown out of that holy land forever.

I am Veladero de los Otates Colima
I was robbed of my nobility and self-worth
under the colonizers.
I became a mere commodity
in the abyss called the peonage system.
I was made to think that the beasts
that worked beside me
were more valuable than my own kind.
The dark images of the world created
a dense fog of affliction over my horizon
that lasted a very long time,
but one day I woke up and realized
that I had always been a living human treasure.
I realized that I had always been
a direct descendant of the king Colimotl.
A proud and strong Colimote
A pawn no more
That was the day
the insurgency exploded inside of me.
That was the day
I joined Jose Antonio Torres
and Rafael Arteaga.
Together we marched and reinforced
the struggle of Miguel Hidalgo.
Together we drew a line in the sand
Together we were the army that never desisted
The army that never stopped
Dispuestos a morir en la raya
And we lived and died by that line
until the day we broke their will to fight.
The day the occupiers were finally
forced out of our boundaries for good.

My name is Joaquin

I am Benito Juarez from Oxaca
I was born a poor Zapotec,
almost a slave.
My own existence worth no more than
a couple ounces of local currency
I began from nothing,
and I rose from nothing
I broke the ceiling of social oppression,
and became the most powerful man in the land
during the dark ages of despotism and injustice.

I am Pancho Villa from Durango
The world had never seen a storm of men and horse
navigate thru the land with such might and speed.
A powerful typhoon of fire and steel
commanded by me.

I am Emiliano Zapata from Morelos
I’d rather die on my feet
than to live on my knees.
Like any other man of honor
I have no fear of death
I only fear a life with no hope,
no dignity, and no justice.

My name is Joaquin

I am Luis Rodriguez from south Sangra
I am the sanctified image of culture,
Honor, and respect.
Nothing in my life matters,
but the profound essence of my identity.
I am the nocturnal gallant phantom
The midnight boulevard rider
The dangerous mind in constant motion
I am the physical manifestation of bravery
The brute virility that represents manhood
I am the Pachuco who stood his ground
and spit on the face of the pelones.
The night of the zoot-suit riots

I am Antonio Marez from Las Pasturas
I am the laborer working the fields of Califas
and the southwest.
Back-breaking work from dawn to dusk
has never been my quandary.
My only predicament
is not been able to make headway in life
by performing my honorable duty.
I walked with Cesar Chavez,
Dolores Huerta,
and started a movement
that sparked our social uprising.
The forward motion of our ideals
cannot be stopped by walls or barriers.
Our revolution is forever

I am Richard Rubio from Santa Clara
I am the brainy scholarship-boy
roaming the quiet halls of Stanford,
Berkeley, and MIT.
I have always been driven
by the sheer magnitude of my intellect.
I am the disciplined scholar
beating the old guard at their own game.
I am the beginning
when everyone has reached their end.
I am a part-time dreamer
A full-time thinker
I am the wheels of progress
The big engine of success
I am the present
I am the future
I am Mexican Power at its best

My name is Joaquin
I am three years old
My life as a young soul has just begun
but my history is long and rich
The expectations for me are sky high
I bear a heavy burden of responsibility,
but there is nothing standing in my way now
Nothing can stop me now
Nothing will stop me now
My psyche has been illuminated and awaken
by the continuous candescence
of my past struggles
I have become numb to infringement
and social breach
You cannot frighten me
You cannot threaten me
You cannot hurt me
I am immune to fear
I am immune to pain
I am immune to harm
I have become the great eagle
that represents my soul
I have become the molder of my own destiny
The enforcer of my own justice
The creator of my own force
I stare at the present with a ferocious will
to crush anything that dares to get in my way
I stare at the future with the self-confidence
that I can reach an infinite amount
of uncharted latitudes
I can finally fly to unknown heights
I can finally dream about the impossible
and the forbidden.
I can finally stamp my footprint
on the social fabric
we call American Exceptionalism.
I can finally have my name engraved
on the top echelon of this new phenomenon
we call Globalism.
Yes my name is Joaquin
Yes I am here now
I have arrived and I will never leave
This corner of the world has always been
my homeland.
This enchanting place will always be my land
My next ten-thousand-year journey
thru this sea of beloved landscapes
has now began.


Roberto C. Reyes