Poetry Corner


 

"BROKEN BIRD WINGS" 

BY GLORIA FONTANEZ

 

 

Born whole

Fallen upon winters cold

Feathers shatter like days, grow old

 

Bare-trees bend branches down

Crippled by time fall to the ground

Cloudy skies in loneliness frown

 

Crying children are hushed

Pushed along to grow in a rush

Rose petals prematurely fallen, are crushed

 

Dancers no longer swing

Chimes without wind won’t ring

Voices muted can’t sing

 

Ice melted by reflective glare

Flood filled eyes left uncared

Life’s fabric slowly gets old and wears

 

Quiet sounds like stars are shown

On deaf ears thrown  

Love not nurtured is forgone

 

Ocean fierce appears with undertow

Soul weighed down by sorrow

Nothing remains to lend or borrow

 

Buildings collapse, the spirit cries

Rubble , once a reminder of life is left behind

Smoke creates a blinded sky

Birds with broken wings no longer fly

 

© 2014 Gloria E. Fontanez

 


 

"CRYSTALS"

BY GLORIA FONTANEZ


 

Like a sweet soft melody

The flakes tenderly descend

Halting a city’s frenzied routine

 

Blanketing the streets

Full of hope and also dread

Panorama of extremes

 

Listen with ears of joy

And hear the whistle

Of the rhythm silencing

 

Giving rise to memories

Old songs, old loves

Of dreams unmet

 

Halt and take it in

It’s soon to drift astray

Crystals vanish as they fall

 

Like a written love song

Never heard

And, blown away

 

 © Gloria E. Fontanez 2-4-2014


 

 

"WITH PEN OF SOUL"

BY GLORIA FONTANEZ

Songs are written with pen of soul

Melody synchronized as if paved in gold

Play to dancing feet repeating

Arms extended taking hold

 

Melody synchronized as if paved in gold

Heard upon the mountains high and valleys low

Arms extended taking hold

Play to dancing feet repeating

 

Heard upon the mountains high and valleys low

Drums are seething with freedom ringing

Play to dancing feet repeating

Arms extended taking hold

 

Drums are seething with freedom ringing

Play to dancing feet repeating

Arms extended taking hold

Songs are written with pen of soul

 

© 2013 Gloria E. Fontanez

 

"STRINGS"

BY GLORIA FONTANEZ

 

I write because I must

Sharing of the world with self-defined

human conscious expression

absorbing found evidence

 

Like knitting needles

searching for the next stitch

I write

Dripping words onto trails

As if I were a flower girl

Seeking to find softness

Where harshness prevails

 

I write to truths or fantasies

Loudly or whispers deep

I write because

there is nothing more beautiful

than the joining of letters

Like stringing flowers to make a lei

like painting a serene landscape

or like finding the lyrical beats

of the broken heart in a love song

 

With warmth on the rise

Dripping in perspiration

pinned to a clothes line above an empty yard

Where cats meow

And

music crawls up the walls

into windows

I peek

While rats run wild in garbage cans and,

Nestlé in dirty diapers

I write

 

I sit pen in hand

And smile,

Ice melting slowly in the box of frozen wishes

Where long ago

The Bathtub sat in the kitchen

And as I bathed mom told stories of palm trees

And how a sky-blue sea washed over the sand

As the sun

Joined the gallop of horses running wild on a Vieques beach.

 

Whether in the

light of day or

shadows of night

I write

 

Beginnings and

completion are rarely the same

inspiration is key

yet,

often uncertain

 

Thoughts and fletching ideas disjointed like threads

Come loose

around my under garments

Yet, no one knows but me.

 

I sit by the corner window searching the bare trees

I jump and hold my breathe like riding the cyclone

To the aroma of cotton candy

A girl pregnant and fifteen

Reminiscing to the fear

Of never playing again

memories......

 

I compose a song remembering when movies

Were black and white

Eva Gardner Venus-Goddess of love

sang Speak Low

And James Cagney yelled from on top of the world 'look ma'

 

I write to escape or to find myself

I don't know which

until I write.


 

©2012 Gloria E. Fontanez

 

"WHOLE"

BY GLORIA FONTANEZ

 

sun you have taught me

to glow under the vast sky

 

clouds you have shown me

the way to the arms of the rain

 

trees when under you I sit

you provide shade clearing confusion

 

river with your roaring rapids

you teach me to be alert

 

mountains of head held high

you call upon me to stand tall

 

ocean with the power to sink ships

your WAVES teach me kindness

 

snow with fingers extended cold

I’ve learned to appreciate time

 

Moon on quiet nights

you embrace my heart with peace

 

Earth you have made

a restless woman whole

 

 

©2012 Gloria E. Fontanez


"ENAMORED"

BY GLORIA FONTANEZ


 

I am a music instrument without hands

 

a voice thrust in the night

 

noise without sound

 

unwilling to experience the world without melody


I close my eyes and travel back in time


the Joe Cuba Sextet, the voice of Cheo Feliciano


the guy next door singing "To Be With You"


Jimmy Sabater in the background


I am a child bride, captivated by lyrics


enchanted by harmony


enthralled by movement


enamored by orchestration


I am made of fabric woven in the hills


while riding the ocean's roaring cry


tied to the enthusiasm of the sun,


I glide on the sound of a humming bird's song


I am the lips of a trumpeter


the legs of a tap dancer


the microphone of the vocalist


the skin of drums


I am unbending like steel of vibraphones


and fragile like coconut shell maracas


I am curved like a bass, decisive like a baritone sax


I am linear like the guitar strings of my Jibaro


I am joined, and alone


able to ring without chime


yet, unable to connect


in a world without music   

         

                           

© 2012 by Gloria E. Fontanez

 

Gloria Ester Fontanez, was born in Santurce, Puerto Rico to a sugar cane cutter from Yabucoa and a woman of extraordinary heart. When she was two years old she and her mother arrived in New York and settled in East Harlem. Soon after, her father arrived and the family moved to the Lower East Side of Manhattan where she lived for most of her early life.

 

She considers herself lucky to have lived on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, for it was there, in that magnificent “melting pot,” that she learned about the similarities and difference of people from different parts of the world; people, who like her own, had come to this country searching for a better way of life.  

 

As a young child, she was drawn to mingle, observe, ask questions and take from these experiences to create her own diversified reality. She also experienced prejudice, like so many of recently arrived immigrants, but she grew to look at the source of that prejudice and not blame those wrongly influenced.

 

When Gloria was eight years old, she picked up pencil and paper and began writing, discovering a deep yearning to tell stories brewing in her mind. This she did through the art of poetry.

 

As a Puerto Rican woman, she felt a deep pride and desire to write of her own ancestry, penning poems and short stories of immigration and of the cultural treasures found in the language, music and arts of her Puerto Rican people. She was particularly drawn to the music. At house parties, she listened to the records of El Trio Los Panchos, compositions of Pedro Flores and Rafael Hernández, the music of Bobby Capo, Cortijo y Su Combo and others. At age thirteen, she would sneak into the Palladium Ballroom where she danced to some of Latin music’s greatest bands.

 

For Fontanez, writing and music merged in the same manner that the colors of a rainbow mix to blend and make sense.

 

Although many of her works have been kept in notebooks, later on computers or published in online magazines, in recent years her first Chap Book entitled Unspoken Canto, was published by Erbacce Press in England

(ISBN # -13-978-1906588441).

 

Gloria continues to dedicate much of her life to searching for those stories, and during the last decade has ventured to write about the passion she shares with so many others about the music we live to love.

 

She is currently writing a book about Puerto Rican family gatherings to make pasteles, not as a cook book but as a book of cuentos/stories. She strives to capture the process of making la masa (dough), adding the meat, cutting the paper, tying the string, as music, the all encompassing platform, remains the main ingredient to living a joyful life.

 

Fontanez believes Viva La Música NY Style® best describes the way in which many of us who emigrated from Puerto Rico since the early 1940’s, are able to maintain the connection to our roots, to our ancestry, to our composers, musicians and our music, and to Borikén.

 

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