Carlos and His Guaraches

FindingĀ meaningĀ in the shoes of a prisoner

Araceli Esparza was born in Madison, Wisconsin, while her parents were migrant farm workers from Guanajuato, Mexico. Her writing fluxes from observation to hip hop to cultural translations where as a poet she exemplifies the new American culture. Carlos and his Guaraches reflects her intriguing combination of both Spanish and English. – Fabu

Carlos and his Guaraches

Carlos used to always wear Nikes, K-Swiss or some other expensive wannabe shoes, the type of shoes that costs a lot and lasts very little.
I’m sure you’ve heard how his relatives make them for pennies and his father sells them for hundreds.

Now he wears guaraches, I ask if it’s because of the shoelaces.
That’s what I was told one time.
They take your shoes laces away because they’re afraid of you doing something with the laces.
You might commit suicide, but how? I
suppose guaraches take that worry away.
I bet they remind him of los pobres de Mexico.

Irony is starting to taste bitter for all of us.
Nobody comes anymore to ask about him.
The watchdogs have been re-tracked.
The village has been raped and burned.
The prisoner is safe without shoelaces and left with just his guaraches.

Audio productions provided courtesy of Haggar Audio.

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