On Sunday, we paraded to a new barrio.
Meeting the delegation there, we greeted each other
With hugs and besos,
Then proceeded to stand around
in what seemed to be a space for events;
A grassy courtyard.
Here, we met three men and I’ll go ahead
and call them ballarines;
They taught us folkloré dancing that day
and a ‘lil song too.
The sun shined through the trees
that half-kissed our surroundings,
Wind blew past our cheeks,
Smiles clayed our faces,
And a multicolored flag hung
Like a distant touch to
the day of the mother: Pachamama.
If my soul wasn’t floating that day
Then I don’t know what transcendence feels like;
Dancing together was only a snapshot of their halos.
Then today happened.
After dinner, we had a reflection.
We gathered in the living room and
Squiggled our way onto couches, chairs,
and bean bags.
in silence, two songs were played
to bring us
into this delicate space.
When they ended,
Jen (the Casa Mama) asked us
to give our testimonies
Of how CASA has impacted our time here.
One by one, we spoke.
Then the delegation spoke, and
Lastly the staff.
They all spoke, do you hear them?
Do you hear their hearts?
some quiet in rhythm, some
stoic, yet all vulnerable to the eye.
Quiet just a bit more.
Like a river they flowed
Together in one space;
They poured into this divine,
Drop by drop,
Tear by tear.
And just when they thought there was
Nothing more to give,
Just when they thought they emptied
their flower vases,
They became filled with
inherently familiar, and
They all spoke and there were here;
Can you see their halos?
Sam Parham is a junior Communications major at LMU. She is apart of Cohort 9 and wrote this poem after a visit from an LMU delegation in May 2018.