August 21, 2017

Sueños De Esperanza (2013)

(Click on titles for lyrics/audio)

Alicia 5’35”
Lilia
4’05”
Raquel
5’01”
Maria
4’32”
(Recording: Sandra Bengochea, soprano; Henry Mollicone, piano)

Four stories of immigrant women
for soprano solo with piano accompaniment
Poems by Maria Marroquin
Level: medium, 19’13”
Purchase Score

Program Notes:

These songs were composed for a benefit event held by DAY WORKERS OF MOUNTAIN VIEW, a strong organization that serves immigrants in Northern California. Having visited their offices, I was very impressed with the range of programs they provide for immigrants, and the personal commitment of their director, Maria Marroquin.

Maria interviewed four women, and transcribed their true stories into poems which I have set to music. The stories have a common tread that suggests the difficulties and painful experiences of immigration in our society. It is our hope that the stories of these brave women help to raise awareness of this important issue.

—Henry Mollicone

Alicia
5’35”

Tonatico, mi dulce
pueblo donde nací,
De una familia grande
como mis anhelos.
Tonatico, la cuna de mis sueños,
Mi familia, lo mejor de mis recuerdos.Mi niñez huyó espantada
por el hambre.
La adolescencia me vistió
de responsabilidades.
La vida me cubrió de
deberes grises, Y tristes
despertares de continuo.Llegó el amor a Tonatico,
ese amor que aun me mantiene viva,
Ese amor que me hizo
desafiar todo peligro,
Ese amor que me inspiró
a perseguir nuevas estrellas,
Y me trajo hasta aquí
Y me hizo madre.

Tonatico, Tonatico
cuna de mi vida.
Tonatico, Tonatico
nido de mi amor.
Dos semillas germinadas, mi constante
Inspiración nuestros dos hijos son.

Nuestros hijos son
nuestra bendición.
Protegerlos, que no
sientan ni un dolor,
Que estudien, que prosperen,
Es nuestra importante primer misión.

Ella quiere ser doctora,
El, atleta estrella.
Pido a dios nos ilumine,
Para ayudarles sus sueños a lograr.
Eso es todo lo que pido.

Tonatico, my sweet
hometown, where I was born
to a family as large
as my longings.
Tonatico, the cradle of my dreams,
My family, the best of my memories.My childhood fled,
scared off by hunger.
Adolescence burdened
me with responsibilities.
Life covered me with gray,
drab duties and continuous
sad awakenings.Love arrived at Tonatico,
this love that keeps me living,
This love that made me
challenge all danger,
This love that inspired
me to pursue new stars,
And brought me here,
making me a mother.

Tonatico, Tonatico,
cradle of my life.
Tonatico, Tonatico,
nest of my love.
Two planted seeds of constant
Inspiration are our two sons.

Our children are
our blessing.
To protect them so that
they don’t feel any pain,
That they study, that they prosper
Is our most important mission.

She wants to be a doctor,
He, a star athlete.
I ask God to illuminate us,
To help them achieve their dreams.
This is all that I ask.

 

Lilia
4’05”

Catorce huérfanos dejó
mi padre al morir.
Fue muy duro, fue muy triste
En la semana la escuela;
Sábados y domingos
Trabajar para comer.Me enamoré y me entregué.
Fui feliz por poco tiempo.
En mi vientre el amor germinó.Buscando una mejor vida
Para esa vida en mi vientre,
Al país del norte huí.
Sin a mi madre adiós decir.

Mi niña nació, pensé
todo era perfecto.
Mi niña, su padre y yo!

Tres años duró mi dicha.
Sí, el nos abandonó,
Diciendo que volvería.
Y aun esperándolo estoy!

Mi niña lo ama,
lo espera aun también.
No tengo corazón
de quitarle esa esperanza.
Si casi nada le doy.
Al menos, pienso
siquiera tiene ese anhelo.

Debes volver
a tu patria,
Exige mi corazón.
Quédate aquí y trabaja,
Aconseja la razón.

Total, irse o quedarse,
Si estoy con ella da igual.
Ella es mi orgullo y mi fuerza.
Ella es principio y final.

Fourteen orphans remained
after father passed away.
It was very hard, it was very sad
In school during weekdays;
Saturdays and Sundays
we worked for food.I fell in love and gave myself away.
I was happy for a while.
In my womb our love blossomed.Looking for a better future
for the life I carried inside,
I came to this land.
I left my mom without a goodbye.

My daughter was born
and I thought all was perfect.
My daughter, her father and me!

My happiness lasted three years.
Yes, he abandoned us,
Promising to come back.
Still, I’m waiting for him!

My daughter loves him,
and waits for him too.
I don’t have the heart
to take away her hope.
I almost can’t provide for her.
At least, I know
she still maintains the desire.

You should return
to your country,
my heart says loudly.
Stay here longer and work,
My reason advises.

After all, to stay or to leave,
If she is with me it is the same.
She is my pride and my strength.
She’s the beginning and the end.

 

Raquel
5’01”

Veinte años y
madre de cinco.
Veinte años y lo
único más grande
Que mi pena y mi miedo
Era mi responsabilidad
de mantenerlos.Abusada de continuo
por el cobarde,
Agobiada por el hambre
y por el peso del dolor,
Decidí al norte venir.Conociendo lo difícil del viaje,
que con niños cuesta más.
A ganar dinero voy,
por ellos mandaré cuando
Dios me lo permita.
Y llorando, dije adiós.

El cruce de la frontera
fue una horrible pesadilla.
Las fuerzas me abandonaron
y tres veces me desmayé.
Solo el recuerdo de mis niños,
me puso de nuevo en pie.

En fin, limpiando casas,
cuidando niños y enfermos,
Trabajé, junté, y me los traje.
Oh mi Dios, al fin feliz!
Mas la ilusion duró poco.

Pandillas, alcohol y drogas
ingresaron a mi vida.
Ahora sola, triste y vieja,
tengo miedo de vivir.
Si regreso me espera su venganza.

Si me quedo, no es
mejor mi porvenir,
sin seguro, sin licencia,
Sin papeles, solo soy una
sombra más en la noche oscura.

Twenty years old and
mother of five.
Twenty years old and
the only thing bigger
Than my sadness and my fear
Was my responsibility
to feed them.Abused continuously
by the coward,
I was hungry and
depressed all the time.
I decided to come to the north.But I knew the risk of this trip
was even riskier with kids.
I’m going to make money
and I’ll send for them
when God wills.
Crying, I said goodbye.

Crossing the border
was a horrible nightmare.
My strength abandoned me
and I fainted three times.
Only the memory of my children
brought me to my feet again.

Finally, cleaning houses,
baby sitting and caregiving,
I was able to bring them.
Oh my God, happy at last!
But it was just a brief illusion.

Gangs, alcohol and drugs
came into my life.
Now alone, old and sad,
I’m afraid of living.
If I return, his vengeance awaits.

If I stay, my future is
no better without a
social security number or a license.
Without papers, I’m just one
more shadow in the dark night.

 

Maria
4’32”

Cuando dejé Oaxaca,
Una parte de mi se quedó allá –
La que me da energía
Por la que sueño alegrías,La que me mantiene viva,
La que me detiene aquí,
La que me conserva enhiesta.
A pesar de tanta soledad y tristeza –Mi hijo,
mi niño amado,
mío solo mío,
Al que dejé en mi Oaxaca
por amarlo tanto así.
Lo dejé para labrarle una vida
con mis sueños,
Construirle un futuro
con mis manos.

Lo repito y lo repito hasta
grabarlo en mi mente.
Sin embargo
la duda siempre conmigo,
Sigo aquí
o a mi Oaxaca regreso?
Le doy comida o amor?

Pido a Dios que me ilumine
Y a todas las madres del mundo.
Pido a Dios
que me lo cuide
Y a todos los hijos
que sin madre están.

Pido a Dios que una frontera
No divida más familias;
Exijo su intervención
Para parar tanto llanto,
Parar ya tanta muerte.

Pido que se haga presente
Que repare tanto daño.
El es todo poderoso.
El también tiene mamá.

When I left Oaxaca,
A part of me stayed there –
The part that gives me energy
For dreaming happy dreams,The part that holds my life together,
The part that keeps me here,
The part that keeps me upright
Through so much loneliness and grief –My child,
my beloved son,
mine alone,
Whom I left in Oaxaca
because I love him so.
left to give him a life
as in my dreams,
To build him a future
with my hands.

I repeat it and repeat it
until it sticks in my mind.
Still the question
is always with me:
To stay here
or return to Oaxaca?
To give him food or love?

I ask the Lord to enlighten me
And all the mothers in the world.
I ask for Him
to take care of my son
And for all the children
who are motherless.

I ask the Lord that the border
Not divide more families;
I plead for His help
To stop so much crying
And stop so much death.

I ask for His presence
To repair so much damage.
He is the almighty.
He also has a mother.

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