“All the Mexicos” by Vincent Toro

Vincent Toro


Fox news recently reported that President Trump is threatening to cut off aid to three Mexican countries.

I want to live in all the Mexicos. The Mexico of Bolaño’s nostalgic fantasia.
The Mexico where Eliécer Gaitán served up his allocutions. Somewhere
I won’t be interrogated for taking a sick day. Where my neighbor stops

by to bring me caldo. I’ll live in any Mexico. The Mexico Rugama
and Gioconda Belli called home. Or even one of the Mexico’s where
everyone speaks French Creole. Any Mexico will do. So long as I don’t

lose any more digits to these Arctic gales. My lover once told me
of a Mexico where there are no advertisements and you’d swear
the café was made of gold. Sign me up for that Mexico. How about

the Mexico where Romero delivered his last sermon? Give me the ceiba
trees or dunes of the pampas, the cane fields of the Mexico that bred
my parents. My ankles are swelling from the sulfuric acid in these streets.

And if I’m going to be underpaid anyway, then why not take my coins to
the Mexico that houses the canal or one of the Mexicos the Orinoco runs
through. I’ll set up shop in any Mexico that will have me, so long as I can

weep on plots of earth that can say I’m so proud of you, mijo. So ship
me to Ana Cristina Cesar’s Mexico that also longs for the perhaps.
Box me up and leave me in Vallejo’s Mexico with its startling Volcanoes

of repentance. Give me all the Mexicos of the hemisphere, pistol
whipped by United Fruit and still making wisecracks. I’ll take root
in any Mexico that knows the difference between the gutter and stars.

from Poets Respond
April 7, 2019


Vincent Toro: “This poem is a response to Fox new’s reporting that President Trump is threatening to cut off aid to three Mexican countries. This kind of yellow journalism imposes ignorance about the people of Latin America that can have a violent impact. I wanted to respond to that kind of deliberate ignorance that dehumanizes entire populations while also celebrating the people that Fox news is demeaning with this reportage.” (web)

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