Capturing The Souls Of The Incas – A Poem

Caught between two tectonic plates

That slide seamlessly under the feet of unsuspecting crowds,

A constant threat of crumbling houses and broken hearts,

A cracked mirror that exposes souls, a deep vision of a setting sun,

Children are playing in an improvised yard of crushed stones and hardened mud.

They dream of somewhere else.

As I cross the fractured street, breathing the air of unfinished dreams,

I notice a little girl sitting at the intersection of two roads leading to nowhere.

I look into her heart, she fleetingly notices the colour of my skin,

So different from her own.

What future does she hold, I ask myself,

What secrets would she keep from me –

A visitor from outer-space?

The love she deserves is soured by the bitter taste of poverty

That begins in her own home and traverses the neighbourhood,

To finally engulf the unfinished metropolis.

This demon – fabricated by people who resemble me

Extends its tentacles to end its path in a far-away place that no-one knows of.

The little girl, like so many others, knows of nothing else,

She cannot miss what she does not have.

The setting Inca sun should be there for all,

El Mismo Sol,

But is it?

As I return home – so far away from her furthest dreams,

I think of my little Inca girl sitting on the corner of a busy street,

Waiting for traffic lights to go from green to red,

Performs her act  and collects her measly dues.

This was the land of the Incas,

An empire built on gold.

Peru, what has happened to you?