Ilka Oliva Corado’s Poetry of the Diaspora

Comparto este texto escrito por Tiffanie Clark, que estudia el Doctorado en Literatura Centroamericana en La Universidad de Cincinnati, Ohio, Estados Unidos. Tiffani está escribiendo su tesis y escogió la poesía de 4 poetas migrantes para su análisis, entre ellos la mía. Le agradezco el empeño por dar a conocer mi trabajo literario entre la comunidad académica de Estados Unidos. Ilka Oliva Corado’s Poetry of the Diaspora Tiffanie Clark  Síntesis              Este trabajo presenta algunos aspectos sociopolíticos de la producción poética de Ilka Oliva Corado (1979) con un enfoque en las maneras en la que su condición y consciencia diaspórica afectan…

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Dare to heal the wound

Translated  by Katrina Hassan It is not important how the first form of expression emerges. If with fear, anger, ire, powerlessness, or frustration and therefore booms and hurls fire or burns like embers.  If the expression scratches, screams, painfully cries or throws punches into the air. That is really not important. The wound is beginning to heal, that is important. It is not important that there are tumbling steps. There might be three steps forward and one step back, going sideways or zigzagging. It is important to stand up, try and walk, even though at first only crawling and dragging oneself. Soon,…

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On rainy days like today…

Translated  by Katrina Hassan Yes,yes, yes, I regularly burn sage my room, on drizzly mornings like today. The smell of the sage leaf brings back memories of the smell of wood burning ovens lit up in rural Guatemala. There are no wood ovens here. In this enormous industrial town, there are only factories that line the packing district. Although, the other day, I saw an outdoor oven. It was on a farm on the outskirts of town. I felt winded, I couldn’t breathe!  An oven! An oven! I yelled again! I ran from the stable, past the goats and vegetable patch.I reached…

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Migrating Wings

Translated  by Katrina Hassan They arrive with their sad little eyes, anxious, and with all hope lost. They have an urgency to find work, after all, that is why they came here. To work. These are the man-boys and women-girls that never had a childhood and went straight to work as kids.  They were made to grow up in one go, just like their parents and grandparents. They look like kids and adolescents, yet something was taken from them. Something did not develop properly in what should be the natural way a child grows. In a healthy society, protected by the…

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Love above all

Translated  by Katrina Hassan A huge cloud appears all of a sudden. What was once a sunny morning becomes a typical winter day. People run frantically from the parking lot towards the supermarket. The rain is from a great big storm. In a matter of seconds the sky darkens and huge drops fall as heavily as hail from the sky. I take my shopping cart and enter the store, shaking the rain off my sweater. I walk towards the vitamin aisle. I search for what I need, but it is difficult because there are two shopping carts in the way. They…

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The Vainglorious World

Translated  by Katrina Hassan We live in a vainglorious world. A world where we praise the sleazy, the backstabbers, the unscrupulous and those that step all over people to achieve their goals. In a world of farce, where the only reality is a joke, we create a place that is fed by our actions and passiveness. This depending on what is convenient and whether  or not the winds blow into our bubble of indifference and egoism. In this world there is no respect for others and any living creatures. We are societies of disposable individuals and cowards. Individuals that have lost all…

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A Strong Will

Translated  by KatrinaHassan It was about the mid 90s in Ciudad Peronia, when a married couple moved in from La Bethania, another town on the outskirts. By then Ciudad Peronia was already populated. Left behind were dusty plots of unmeasured land, empty lots surrounded the market, the bus stops, El Gran Mirador, La Surtidora, and La Cuchilla.  Don Luis and his wife came to town and bought a house that once belonged to a family of ulphosterers. It was normal to see the skeletons of furniture surrounding that house. Their house was the first one on the block, going up the main…

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Write, women, write!

Translated  by Katrina Hassan Girls are given dolls so that an early age they learn their place in society. Their place, to give birth and care for children. Children that will eventually become sons, brothers, grandkids, nephews, boyfriends, lovers, companions, husbands.   Whatever the grade of kinship may be, women’s function in society is to be mothers. Mothers in all the patriarchal context; that being, cease to exist just to serve others. Boys are given toy guns and cars, so they can take to the streets. They know that wars are made up of the male gender. Can it be? Very rarely…

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Hayashi Fumiko’s Resistance 

Translated  by Katrina Hassan “If this book influences today’s youth, dragged deep in poverty, in-tranquility, and need, to keep living, there would be nothing that brings me more joy.’’  This is the ending to the preface of  Hayashi Fumiko’s Diary of a Vagabond book written in 1939. Published initially in instalments in 1928 & 1930.  Her diary was written between 1922 and 1927. We shall estimate she was between 18 to 23 years old. This was when pain, misery and social exclusion ripped her skin off in pieces. She went through an infinity of badly paid jobs on her way to being a powerful…

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Like Sewer Rodents

Translated  by Katrina Hassan The day of the year doesn’t matter, neither does the weather. Even if it is pouring rain, they are always there. From dusk until dawn, breaking their back.  Their bodies, a work tool, and their means of survival. It doesn’t matter if they think or feel. If they ask themselves what time it is. A clock, for the exploited worker, never stops ticking. It matters not that they have blisters or a toothache. No matter if a relative died, or if their child is born. They are always there. Breaking their backs. They are never seen as a  person. On…

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The Solitude of the Ixil People

Translated  by Marvin Najarro  When listening to Luna de Xelajú, the chirimía and the tum, or when marveling at the gigantic kites of Santiago Sacatepéquez we experience a feeling of nostalgia. When the aboriginal peoples’ multicolored clothes leave us speechless, stunned, suddenly a certain something takes hold of us, akin to a kind of pride for a multicultural Guatemala; it’s what we export: something called folklore. The indigenous peoples are used for that, to be the folklore of Guatemala before the world. Those designs embroidered on pieces of clothing worn by the indigenous peoples are seen in blankets, napkins, wallets,…

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