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San Cristobal de las Casas

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They like to all me Cristóbal

and wave a flurrying finger to mark

the accent.  Here I am recognized

almost diminutive in a dentelle

of design higher still in the chain,

this cordillera till I am perched

almost to over-tumble to the ocean,

the same which made old when young,

and now from its other littoral makes

me so much older and younger than before

in this beaten dance and song:

 

Cristóbal, chrism from the beaks

of heron blue-swift flame skip

on the houses of San Cristóbal,

Indian Cristóbal, from the mountains,

Cristóbal.  Dance in air above sand

arena, on squared-circle arms fly

with the eagle and the heron drum

and ring Cristóbal.  Christened

in mescal vital and greened alive

is quick with the flight of the men

who whirl a white crescendo

calming all the chiming hibiscus,

as down from a flowering cross

Cristo dances here in Cristóbal.