The Eater of Dreams
by Christopher Bogart
Scheduled Release Date: May 15, 2020
“Christopher Bogart’s poems demonstrate that poetry’s embrace can include the idea of justice and the feeling of outrage.”
—Robert Pinsky, United States Poet Laureate (1997–2000)
The Eater of Dreams begins with a vulgar curse and ends with an open question. The poems tell stories of the journey that begins in the hells of the poorest sections of Central America and ends with the hope of salvation in a new land.
The title refers, in a narrow sense, to the poem that tells of what happens to those whose lives and dreams are chewed up under the wheels of the freight train known as The Beast. In a greater sense, it refers to all of the obstacles: violent gangs, drug cartels, Mexican immigration authorities—all the dangers these migrants face on their journey north to the US. Each year, only forty percent of those who begin the journey make it to the border. One out of every five of these migrants is an unaccompanied minor. Two out of every five, men and women, are raped (or worse) by gangs or drug cartels. Some either drown in the Rio Grande or die of thirst in the American deserts. Approximately 500 bodies are either washed up on the shores or found in our deserts each year. But they keep coming because, for them, paradise could be just one more hell away.
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