El éxito y otras preguntas.

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Entre que escribía y no escrbía, opté por escribir. Este semestre tomé una clase de literatura en español y en lo que estudiamos ensayos, me decidí por empezar a escribir ensayos para este blog.

A veces tenemos muchas ideas en la cabeza, pero esas ideas se quedan estancadas en solo ideas, nunca las ponemos en acción. Me he dado cuenta que hay gente que va por la vida haciendo cosas empíricamente y estas personas por lo general tienden a salir adelante.

¿Qué es lo que pasa? Lo que pasa es que mucha gente con talento tiene grandes ideas pero ya sea por miedos o complejos nunca tienden a desarrollar estas ideas. A veces nos dejamos influenciar por las ideas de otras personas o comparamos nuestra vida con la de otras personas, cuando en realidad esto es algo muy erróneo.

Somos dueños de nuestras propias vidas, el éxito no se basa en followers, dinero o sexo. El éxito creo es algo subjetivo… o … ¿Podrá existir algo así cómo el éxito objetivo? Tal vez. Soy creyente de la famosa frase de Sócrates, “Una vida sin examen no merece la pena vivirla”.

¿Qué quiere decir esto? Como todo un filósofo, Sócrates creía que para vivir una buena vida debemos de preguntarnos las cosas o examinar nuestra vida. Cada vez que aprendo algo nuevo quiero aprender más y me gusta preguntarme el por qué de las cosas.

Quiero vivir el resto de mi vida enriqueciendo mis conocimientos. Quiero crear arte, quiero explorar, vivir y amar. Muchas veces nosotros mismos frenamos nuestros impulsos y cortamos nuestras propias alas, pero creo que esta vez entendí las cosas diferente. Creo que hoy por hoy no me importa lo que piense la gente, ni el qué dirán.

Siempre he sido una persona que le ha fascinado observar y admirar sus alrededores. A usted querido lector, le digo que la vida es tan bella y lo bello es que todos tenemos puntos de vista diferentes, todos tenemos diferentes ideas del amor, el éxito y la felicidad. Entonces en este blog lo que quise hacer hace mucho tiempo pero siempre me detuve un poco, fue en crear esa conexión con usted. Como estudiante de filosofía lo invito a compartir su opinión para que juntos podamos aprender y que me cuente usted su percepción de las cosas.

Ahora más que poesía, me gustaría escribir ensayos con mi visión del mundo. Ahora le preguntó a usted, querido lector. ¿Qué temas quisiera discutir o dialogar?

 

La noche

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Entonces nos envuelve la noche,
Otra vez con sus misterios,
Sus luces y anécdotas de amores pasados.

Nos recuerda esos buenos momentos
Y las amargas horas,
Las luces de los bares siempre me llaman,
Quieren que escriba historias
O que las encuentre.

Entre la ciudad y el campo
Siempre hay amoríos,
En las noches oscuras
Y en las noches claras,
Siempre hay besos de por medio.

Jamás quise irme,
De los besos y encuentros de la noche
Siempre me han dado,

Tan gratos recuerdos,
Qué cada vez que nos encontramos
Yo le escribo poesía,
Porque así empezó todo.

Escribiendo siempre de amores
Porque la noche siempre me los revela.

I Haven’t Written in a While

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Tis very true… I have not written anything for a while. For a moment I was depressed, I thought of my writing as not being good enough. I wanted to express so much, and I was lost for words. I thought of resignation, but that did not seem so courageous, so here I am venturing out on a new path, with new ambitions.

My writing has definitely changed over the course of the years, after hearing some criticisms of my writings, Spanish readers told me my English writing was far superior than that of my Spanish writing.

As you can imagine, this was something painful to hear. Everything I did was in Spanish and the majority of things that run through my mind are in Spanish, thus why I even refused to write in English during my first years as a young writer. I thought of it as an insult to my culture, my heritage and my first language. I didn’t think I would end up writing in English, but here I am and honestly I am unashamed by this fact now. I will still write in Spanish because I would like to immerse in that beautiful language, but I can’t deny my love for the English language.

I can’t escape it. As a 12 year old living in Guatemala, I would listen punk rock in hopes of grasping a better sense of that foreign language, and by the time I finally got to the US English, was something I rejected. In some part, I was reacting to a change, a culture shock, coming from upper class Guatemala to nothing in the US was something that completely changed my heart and my mind. It took me years to recover from that nostalgia and another psychological traumas that I endured, but I will write about that on another blog post.

Writing is something, that gives me life. The concept of creating a new world based on words gave me thrills, and excitement, until I started doing it for selfish reasons. On that instant when I realized that what I needed to write, needed to be heartfelt I think everything changed. I am no longer interested in creating stuff so people can admire me or praise me. I want to tell stories and I want honest criticism, because I will simply like to get better at what I do, everything else is secondary.

My trip to Guatemala helped me get in contact with my roots. Honestly I fell in love with my country again. After almost 12 years of not going back I had lost faith in ever going back, I was distraught by other things and my vision of going back seemed dismal. I even lost my Guatemalan ID on purpose because I thought I was never going back…. but oh boy was I wrong!

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Going back made me realize how blessed I have been throughout my entire life. I realized I had many stories to write about, but needed to organize my thoughts. I know writing is a craft that needs to be repeated over and over in order to perfect it. I apologize to all my readers for my absence, but now I am back! Ready to write.

Tainted Love

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Tainted love,
I write to you from despair,
I write to you ,
Hoping these verses will make you clear.

I hope that if you listen,
You never faint,
And if you may still breathe,
I ask you to smell.

Oh tainted love!
So forgotten,
So far, yet so close.
The light is dim,
I hope your light never fades.

Tainted love,
Tell me how you are still alive,
After all we been through?

No matter where I be,
My love never fades,
Even if it seems so.

Tell me,
How many starry nights have you watched?
How many times,
In oblivion have you plunged?
How many times?

I hope you never fade,
Like these verses,
In my wake.

Yo Crecí

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Yo crecí entre volcanes y lagos,
Yo crecí en un paraíso,
Muy cercano al Edén.

Yo crecí y me fui,
Pero nunca me olvidé,
De aquellos amores de joven,
De aquellas noches en Guate.

¿Cómo se enamora uno después de tantos años?
Después de casi 12 años,
Seguís siendo la niña de mis ojos.

Aunque te hayan blasfemado,
Abofeteado y otros cuantos olvidado,
Vos venís siendo como un amor,
Que nunca se ha acabado.

Y aunque tu gente sufra,
Yo se que se levanta,
Porque ni el volcán ni la arena
Pueden contener la ola de mi pueblo.

Guatemala…

¡Te amo!

Guatemala es un Sueño

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¿Como podría olvidarme yo de mi tierra?
Un sueño tan real
Cubierta de lagos y volcanes
Sus colores y flores.

Entre las estrellas de Panajachel,
Navegan mis sueños.
En las olas de Monterrico,
Se me fueron las penas
Y las noches bohemias
Me esperan en Antigua.

Sos un sueño
Tus calles parecen fantasía
Y tus historias de otro mundo.

Sos un regalo,
Mi primer amor
Y toda mi infancia.

Gracias
Por tantos cuentos e historias,
Por tanta imaginación.

Thoughts and reflections from Arkansas

I had been waiting for this weekend for months. I remember a couple of months ago when my friend and one of my mentor’s Ray, texted me asking me to go on a hiking trip. I love hiking but was unsure of the costs and time for this trip, until I finally decided to head on an adventure.

The day I had been waiting for had approached and I hadn’t even packed but was still excited about the whole ordeal. I had no jacket nor boots but was able to get a cheap one from Ross and some family friends were able to lend me the boots for my trip. I was set!

As the meeting time was approaching Ray asked me to help him get the van from the airport. I hurried and finished packing all of my luggage and headed straight to Ray’s in-law’s house. After a couple of minutes, we headed to the airport to pick up the creeper looking van. They just needed to sell the glasses and the mustache for $5.99 and it would have been a perfect match! We parked my car at the airport and headed to UH to pick rest of the group.

As we approached the city, I took a picture of the whole downtown skyline and said goodbye. Even though I’ve lived most of my life in Spring, every time I go to the city, I feel this sense of home. As I watched the skyline from 59 my mind started thinking about traveling and experiencing new locations… I was excited.

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When we got to UH. Everyone was waiting for us with the same excitement. Some of us had eaten, others like Ray and I were starving. So when we finally gathered every single one of us in the van, we decided to stop by Whataburger and enjoy one last Texas meal before we headed to Razorback country.

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After the perfect Texas meal, we headed to Arkansas in what would be a long six-hour ride. Our destination was set on a cabin in Mount Ida. As the hours passed and everyone started to sleep, I looked out the window to observe the different signs and lights on the road. I’ve never been able to sleep in the car, I always want to absorb my surroundings and be in the moment. Every time I am on the road and admire the houses and ask myself what do they do? How did they get there? What are they doing? It is always intriguing to see a lonely house on the road and ask myself these questions. As I look at the stars and travel I always wonder how much can I see and how far can I go? I feel as if I was made to travel and explore. My mind awakens.

We made it to the cabin around 4:00 a.m. Amid the pitch black night in the forest, we found the cabin up on a hill. It was silent and obscure which made it seem a little bit creepy.

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As we entered the wooden cabin, we realized it had a welcoming and cozy environment. It was small but spacious and although we didn’t have as many beds as we wanted we made it work. We divided and conquered and we slept as soon as we could because there was a long day ahead of us.

I woke up at eight. As instructed, but nobody else wanted to get up. So to get everyone on the same page, I quietly decided to brew some coffee and sure enough, the aroma would wake everyone up.  I served myself a cup and sat outside on the balcony looking at the woods. I was grateful I could contemplate the immensity of that moment. I could feel the cold penetrating my body as I smelled the earthy scent of the woods and the coffee.

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After everyone woke up, we headed to a famous Mexican restaurant around the area. The restaurant wasn’t as great as the reviews made it be but their staff was very friendly and the food was dirt cheap. I had some chilaquiles which were served in a weird way but were okay. The chilaquiles had sour cream and a chipotle sauce, I was expecting some green or red option but it was okay.

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After we finished eating. We headed to Caddo Bend Trail which was a 30-minute drive from the restaurant. We were all excited and ready to take on the challenge that was to come. We knew it was a 4-mile hike and we were anxious to see the trail. Riding a big ass van through a narrow road with hills and curves was definitely a memorable experience.

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But was was most memorable, was definitely the scenery we encountered. The sun was shining and there was not that much wind. The trailed welcomed us with favorable weather and a beautiful lake that was breathtaking.

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The lake was my favorite place. It was truly breathtaking. I thought for a minute how grateful I was to be there, experiencing the lake at that exact same moment. The water was crystal clear and it was blue, unlike the man-made lakes I have seen around populated places. In that exact same moment I wish I could be a rock expert to talk about the beautiful rocks we saw, but the truth is I don’t know much about rocks and I am okay with it.  I just thanked God for being able to take in all of the scenery, I also wish I had a boat to row around Lake Ouachita and observe the bald eagle. But since we weren’t rock experts nor had a boat, we decided to do something that we certainly knew how to do… which was take pictures.

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Picture Credit: Matt Barrett

 

There were a thousand pictures taken of the scenery, but it cannot do enough justice to explain the beauty of it all. On the road, I wanted to get inspired by reading Keats and there was a piece of a poem that I felt had talked to me. The piece reads:

Stop and consider! life is but a day;
A fragile dew-drop on its perilous way
From a tree’s summit; a poor Indian’s sleep
While his boat hastens to the monstrous steep
Of Montmorenci. Why so sad moan?
Life is the rose’s hope while yet unblown;
The reading ever-changing tale;
The light uplifting of a maiden’s veil;
A pigeon tumbling in clear summer air;
A laughing school-boy, without grief or care,
Riding the springy branches of an elm.” 

After the hike, we headed to the little city of Hot Springs, where we ate some burgers and sandwiches at a local place and then headed back to the cabin to do a bonfire. We stopped at Wal-mart first to buy all the supplies we needed and then started the fire. As the fire started slowly. I thought about how some philosophers viewed fire as their essence. Unpredictable, beautiful yet so destructive. The fire that burns within ourselves is something that we must keep alive. I thought about this as I blew some air with a piece of cardboard to the fire. Watching the fire become alive and catch flames made me reflect upon myself, and how I wish that the fire inside may always keep on burning. That the little spark of curiosity may never leave and stay. That it feeds off those stories surrounding it and that it stays present in my soul.

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In the words of Socrates “The unexamined life, is not worth living”. If there is something this trip has taught me is that I learn more and more each time I travel and that it is never enough. I am always looking to learn and experience more, just like the fire but unlike it. I know not to be consumed by my desires but instead spark it, in time of need.