Go Tell Them

17 September 2001

A poem for Orlando Letelier, Sheridan Circle Memorial, 24 September 2000.

TNI and the Pinochet precedent


go tell them
i am the king of silence
history and language
mountains and memory
kept compressed
tell them
i know how to lock things away
safe, secure
(whisper) so no one will ever know
better than they
i know how to hide keys
invent code
change beginnings
and endings

go tell them
i will teach them
new ways of classifying life
of knowing what to keep and
what to hide
in a stream of names
in the river of places
in circles and plazas
tell them
i was hiding
but i was always here
wrapped in waiting

tell them my name
where I live,
tell them
i know the truth
it's time to catch up to the fire
which will leave them
behind in time
with a useless treasure
they can use my keys,
open the cages and
join us on the other side
tell them it's allright
others have made the crossing


it is time to celebrate heroes
set things straight
long time coming
just look at the sky
could of told you
should of known
so that the children
so that the truth
so that justice

tell them it's late
and the locks are breaking
tell them to hurry
tell them,
we are the children of silence
and we are beginning
to sing, again.