Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Sometimes Life Supports Fiction

 It is always deeply moving to witness citizens taking to the streets to reclaim their communal voice and individual liberties. I was thrilled, yesterday, when I saw, on my friend Michael’s Facebook post, an image of Mexico City’s Paseo de la Reforma as an absolute river of humanity! Thousands upon thousands of people have gathered to protest the recent presidential election in Mexico, that put the corrupt PRI back in power once again. Charges of election fraud are rampant.

 The people are marching to the Zócalo, the largest plaza in any Latin American city. This is the kind of massive protest that I describe in my soon-to be-published book, Fiesta of Smoke, an excerpt from which is below. I include only a fragment, because I don’t want to give away the plot but you’ll get the basic idea. We are living in a time when people all around the globe are rising up to protest injustice and to take back their liberties.

For those who may have missed them, a synopsis of Fiesta of Smoke can be found on the January 5, 2012 post; the Prologue, on January 8; an introduction to the protagonists Calypso, on February 3, Javier, on February 20 and Hill on March 2; Calypso and Hill Dine was posted on March 14; More of Calypso and Hill, on March 30; More of Calypso and Hill–2, on April 10; Calypso’s Apartment, Place des Vosges, on April 19; Hill’s Teenage Sex Life, on May 15; and  Calypso in Paris  on June 25.

. . . .

The footage of the women of Chiapas holding back the advance of the Mexican Army made the nightly news in every major city on the planet. The women touched something primal arising from the deepest layers of the human psyche. As images flashed around the globe of barefooted women in skirts facing off with an army of body-armored, helmeted men carrying automatic weapons, people rose up in response. The following day, a huge protest erupted in Mexico City, marched down Paseo de la Reforma and took over the Zócalo, the largest plaza in Latin America, filling it to overflowing. Soon protests appeared in other major cities of Mexico.

Protesters came to camp in front of Mexican embassies and other contingents picketed at the White House and the United Nations. In Mexico, a general strike paralyzed the country for three full days. At each of these events, reporters and cameramen from international news agencies were present, their interviews and footage on the nightly news adding fuel to the fire. . . .

. . . Hill and Calypso gasped. The sidewalks were lined with crowds carrying signs. Little bands of drums, clarinets and trumpets shrilled tinnily. The demonstration went on for blocks. Many of those gathered were wearing indigenous clothing. Some of them had no shoes.
         “Who are these people?” Calypso could not contain her astonishment.
         “They are the citizens of Mexico. No matter what the official story is on TV or in the newspapers, no one is fooled. Everyone knows who stands with them and who is against them.”
 . . . .

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