| ||A Good Dose of Perspective|
Last night I saw a very poignant documentary called Which Way Home about immigrants riding on top of trains throughout Mexico headed North to try and illegally cross into the U.S. The documentary focused on four youth, ages ranging from 13 to 17, some without family, others who see no opportunity in the lives they have in their home countries.
Their journey is filled with peril: hunger, the danger of riding the trains (during the filming 2 people died when the train went into a tunnel because they happened to be standing up at the time), robbery, corrupt police, and if they make it to the border they run into the danger of crossing the desert or putting their lives into the hands of corrupt smugglers.
I know this sounds a little melodramatic for me to say that watching this film put my own troubles into perspective, but it did. It reminded me that not matter how challenging I may think my own life is (balancing art and my 9-5 job or struggling to make ends meet while living in such an expensive city), it pales in comparison to the plight of people who are dying (literally dying) to get into this country.
This issue is one I've thought about often since I used to work with El Teatro Jornalero, a theatre company comprised of Latino immigrants. And I explored the issue of deaths along the border in my play Woman on Fire. I got into playwriting because of social justice theatre, because I feel it's important for us to get out of the bubbles we live in and see how we are connected to the rest of the world.
Along with giving me a good dose of perspective the film also got me writing again. Poetry, this time. I think I'm going to do a series of prose poems inspired by the documentary.
| ||Posted 8/25/2009 9:34 AM - 76 Views - 4 eProps - 2 comments|
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