Them and Us VI. The Gaze 5.
5.- To gaze into the night in which we are.
(From the new moon to the crescent moon)
Many moons ago: under a new moon, brand new, just barely peeking out, barely enough to make shadows below…
We-are-he arrives. Without needing to consult or check notes, his words begin to draw an image of the gazes of those who rule here, and those whom they obey. When he finishes, we look.
The message from the people is clear, short, simple, blunt. As orders should be.
We, male and female soldiers, don’t say anything, we only look, we think: “This is very big. This doesn’t just belong to us anymore, nor just to the Zapatistas. It doesn’t even belong just to this corner of these lands. It belongs to many corners, in all worlds.”
“We must care for it,” we-are-all [feminine] say, and we know what it is that we are talking about, but we are also talking about we-are-he.
“It will turn out well… but we have to be prepared for it to turn out badly, that is our way in any case,” says we-are-all [masculine].
“So then, we have to prepare it,” we-are-all [feminine] say to ourselves, “take care of it, make it grow.”
“Yes,” we-are-all [masculine] respond to ourselves.
“We must speak with our dead. They will show us the time and the place,” we-are-all [feminine] say to ourselves.
We gaze at our dead, below, we listen to them. We take them this tiny stone. We lay it at the foot of their house. They look at it. We watch them looking at it. They look at us and they take our gaze far, far away, beyond where the calendars and the geographies reach. We see what their gaze shows us. We are silent.
We return, we look at each other, we talk to each other.
“We have to prepare far ahead, prepare each step, prepare each eye, prepare each ear… it will take time.”
“We will have to do something so that they don’t see us, and later something so that they do.”
“In any case they don’t see us, or they see only what they think they see.”
“But yes, we will have to do something… It is my turn.”
“We-are-he will take care of what corresponds to the peoples. We-are-all will look out for things, gently, quietly, hushed, as is our way.”
A few moons ago, it was raining…
“Already? We thought they would need more time.”
“Well yes, but, that’s the way it is.”
“Okay then, think carefully about what we are going to ask: Do they want others to turn and look at them?”
“They do, they feel strong, they are strong. They say that this belongs to everyone, and to no one. They are ready, they say.”
“But, you realize that not only those who are like us will see those who are like us, but that the Bosses from various places who hate and persecute what we are, will also see?
“Yes, we have taken that into account, we know. It is our turn, your turn.”
“Okay then, then it is only a matter of deciding the place and the time.”
“Here,” a hand gestures to the calendar and the geography.
“The gaze that we provoke will no longer be one of pity, of shame, of compassion, of charity, of hand-outs. There will be happiness for those who are like us, but rage and hate from the Bosses. They will attack us with everything they have.”
“Yes, I told them. But they gazed at each other, and this is what they said: ‘We want to see those who we are, to see ourselves with those who we are, even though neither we nor they know that they are what we are. We want them to see us. We are ready for the Bosses, ready, and waiting.”
“When, where then?” Calendars and maps are spread out on the table.
“At night, when winter awakens.”
“In your heart.”
“Is everything ready?”
“Everything is ready, yes.”
Each of us went to our assigned task. We simply shook hands. Nothing else was necessary.
A few nights ago, the moon sleepless and fading…
“They are ready, that which we look at. The next part will be for other gazes. It’s your turn, we say to we-are-he.
“I’m ready, willing,” says we-are-he.
We-are-all concurs in silence, as is our way.
“When our dead speak.”
“In their heart.”
February 2013. Night. Crescent moon. The hand that we are writes:
“Compañeroas, compañeras y compañeros of the Sixth:
We want to introduce you to one of the many we-are-he that we are, our compañero Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés. He guards our door and through his word the we that we are speaks. We ask you to listen to him, that is, that you look at him and thus see us. (…)”
(To be continued…)
From whatever corner of whatever world.
P.S. THAT GIVES NOTICE AND HINTS: The next text, which will appear on the Enlace Zapatista webpage on February 14, the day the we the Zapatistas honor and greet our dead, is principally for our compañeros, compañeras y compañeroas of the Sixth. The complete text can only be read with a password (for which we have given various hints and should be easy to guess) which has already been sent via email wherever we could send it. If you haven’t received it and you can’t figure out the hint (you can find it by reading closely this text and the previous one, “Gaze and Communicate”), you can send an email to the webpage and you will get a response with the password. As we have explained before, the independent media are free to publish, or not, the complete text according to their own autonomous and libertarian considerations. The same goes for whatever compañera, compañero y compañeroa of the Sixth wherever they are. We have no other aim but to let you know that it is you to whom we are talking, and also, importantly, those to whom you decide to extend our gaze.
“B Side Players” from San Diego, Califas, with the track “Nuestras Demandas” (our demands). “B Side Players” is composed of Karlos “Solrak” Paez – voice, guitar; Damián DeRobbio – bass; Luis “El General” Cuenca – percussion and voice; Victor Tapia – Congas and percussion; Reagan Branch – Sax; Emmanuel Alarcon – guitar, cuatro puertorriqueño, and voice; Aldo Perretta – charango, tres cubano, jarana veracruzana, ronrroco, cuatro venezolano, kena, zampoña; Russ Gonzales – tenor sax; Mike Benge – Trombone; Michael Cannon – drums; Camilo Moreno – congas and percussion; Jamal Siurano – alto sax; Kevin Nolan – trombone and trumpet; Andy Krier – keyboard; Omar Lopez – base.
From Galicia, Spain, the track “EZLN” from the group “Dakidarría,” composed by: Gabri (guitar and lead vocals); Simón: (guitar and vocals); Toñete: (trombone); David: (base and vocals); Juaki: (trumpet and vocals); Anxo: (baritone sax); Charli: (keyboard); Jorge Guerra: (drum set)
A very special version of the “Himno Zapatista” (Zapatista Hymn) music and voices from “Flor del Fango.” The musical group “Flor del Fango” was composed of: Marucha Castillo – vocals: Napo Romero – vocals, guitar, charango and quena; Alejandro Marassi – bass, vocals, choir and guitarrón; Danie Jamer “el peligroso” – flamenco, folk, and electric guitars and cuatro; Sven Pohlhammer – electric, sinte, and electric acoustic guitars, Cavaquinho y Mandolina; Philippe Teboul “Garbancito” – vocals, drum set, percussion, choir; Patrick Lemarchand – drum set and percussion; Martín Longan – conductor.