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By Michael David Coffey

Where are you princess
in the volcanic skies
Looking down on Atitlan
-- its pure deep gray green
Inviting my soul
to dwell
And live among the
Mayan echoes
A culture amid cultures
in tradition's garb
Ancient rituals and
spirited independence
Across the lake
in Santa Catarina
Among the merchants
and the players
We dallied and
peered inward
to that ancient

Where are you princess
in the echoing cloisters
Of an old Spanish church
In Chichicastenango
Old customs, time
held rituals
Kneeling, chanting
rhymes to
ancient gods
and spirits
Amid the flickering
candles of
Mother Mary's Church
Ancient spirits,
souls lingering
in the dark corners
of that white
On market day

Where are you princess
in the courtyard
of that Spanish home
In the cobbled streets
The strains of the
marimba players
And the languid
caress of a tropical
Bougainvilleas and
passion flowers
kissing my vision
In the beauty
of a Guatemalan
dark blue sky
And there, in
the shadows
My princess watches

Where are you princess
in the breaking dawn
Gliding across the
deep waters
of Atitlan
Are you in the market
Or at the water's
Washing clothes
and waiting
for another day
Or are you in
my mind
a vision lost
in the strife
and bullets
Clinging to your
But dying in
the shadows
of that church
in Chichicastenango

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Document last modified on: 07/23/2000

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