I, Elena Díaz Bjorkquist born inMorenci, Arizona stand on the shoulders of... Natividad Díaz Herrera born in El Paso, Texas who stands on the shoulders of . . . Teresa Limón Díaz born in Teocaltiche, Jalisco who stands on the shoulders of . . . Josefa Cruz Limón born in Teocaltiche, Jalisco who stands on the shoulders of . . .
the unknown madre who I stand on their came shoulders, before, her name lost looking down at thesein the mist of time, wars, and beautiful madres. conquest, I feel their strengthwho stands on the shoulders of radiate up a long line of nantin, as they support me, the mothers know their sacrifices, from the ancient tribes of their joys. Mexico, I am who I am Aztecas, Chichimecas, because of them. Toltecas, Huachichiles, Zacatecas, and Tecuexes. Nantin who lived in that part of Mexico known as the “place of the temple.”
Reading: “Mama Carmela”an excerpt from Our Spirit, Our Reality by Elena Díaz Bjorkquist
Growing Up in Morenci gave me Valuesthat make me who I am today: Love of family – extended to love of community Courage to stand up for my rights and the rights of others Patience and perseveranceA strong work ethic and a sense of commitment Honesty and Pride Hope for a better future Sharing what I have or know
Poem“Writing as Salvation” by Elena Díaz Bjorkquist
Writing as Salvation I write for salvation. I write to help me heal.Writing lets me find myself — Writing gives meto go back to my childhood A better understandingexplore who I was, of myself, my health,where I’ve been. and relationships. I write to share the lives I write so that othersof Chicanos won’t have to listenin an Arizona town to complaints aboutswallowed up my physicalby a copper mine. or emotional pain. I write true stories I write for its rewards.as fiction Writing is my passion.based upon my life, Writing is my salvation.the lives of my family, Writing lets me knowfriends in Morenci. I’m alive.
Special thanks to Kurt Bjorkquist for scanning the photos