Dedicated to my Mama y Papa and to all parent’s who love their children unconditionally. And to the victims of El Salvador’s civil war, of course.
When I was born, I was born in El Salvador. My country was torn by the unrest of civil war and the malicious murder of God’s servant, Oscar Romero y Galdamez. But on the day I was born, for Maria Esperanza Lopez Duran, the Military Government’s crimes of war, backed by the Reagan Administration of America, were the last thing on her tired and exhausted mind. I was born during the wrath of an earthquake, not created by the machines of men, but rather by the Earth it’s self. My poor Mother, my Father, my older Sister, who would have only been five, the Audacious Doctor, and even his staff of beautiful nurses, thought me to be dead. But with a forceful and a compassionate smack to my backside, I awoke into this life with a string of cries and a compulsive “Harlem Shake.” The Audacious Doctor and his staff of beautiful nurses took me away from my suffering mother to be examined for complications and further health concerns. As she waited for the return of her first son, my poor mother cried and prayed to the Baby Jesus for the health and safety of her baby boy. A Baby to a baby.
Finally, the Audacious Doctor returned and placed my tiny body on my my mother’s trembling bosom and he graciously smiled at the miracle of life, even during the bloodshed of El Salvador’s civil war. As his staff of beautiful nurses took me away, the Audacious Doctor said I was healthy. He said I was beyond healthy. As a matter of fact: based solely on my compulsive “Harlem Shake,” he predicted I would grow up to become a Bad Boy! However, there was only one problem. My Mother froze, clinging to Baby Jesus, and all of his woes. The Doctor paused.
Señora Lopez Duran. The boy is healthy. And so damn pretty! It’s a miracle he is alive, of course. But you see, the problem is, and I do not know how to put this gently, but he’s got a lotta foreskin! As a matter of fact, it is an absurd amount of foreskin the child carries on the head of his tiny penis.
My Mother threw her hands in the air, letting go of the Baby Jesus, and all of his woes, and she cried to the Heavens: Aye Dios Mio!
The Audacious Doctor: We will have to circumcise him, Señora. If the boy will have any chance of living a normal life, we must surgically remove the abnormality for the good of science.
No! My mother snapped. Nunca! It is against God. It is against the Baby Jesus. It is against the Republic of El Salvador!
Pero Señora. Our most beautiful nurse: she fainted at the sight of the enormous foreskin! Too much foreskin! It’s more like a twenty-five-skin! What kind of a God would do this to a Baby Boy? To a tiernito!
My Mother, convinced she was inspired by an act of Divine Providence, gathered my family and I, wrapped in soiled of blankets, out of that blasphemous hospital of the Devil, never to step foot in it again. And as my brave Father drove his family and his new newborn son away to the streets of the capital, echoed by the symptoms of civil war, cries of injustice and the sounds of gunfire, the Audacious Doctor and his staff of beautiful nurses, including the one who had fainted, stood at the steps of the hospital, watching in awe and admiration. The Audacious Doctor even saluted the possibly damned family he let go from his hospital, and with warm tears in his eyes, he cried: God Bless the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front.
Years later. I believe I was three. I was sitting on the stoop of my home, naked as the day I was born, eating a goddamn mango. Just a few feet away, my Mother and our maid were soaking dishes under the lime and jocote trees. As I was orally satisfying the mango, sucking it’s flesh and hairs to its hardened seed, juice flowed down my tiny arms and my tiny body. The strong scent of mango attracted the perverted wasps, which roamed close by. And a school of these bastards swarmed towards me and my beloved mango. From afar, the maid saw the molestation which was about to occur and she shouted as she had just witnessed the assassination of Ernesto Che Guevara: Señora! El Niño! Por Dios, el Niño!
My Mother dropped a stack of dishes she had just cleaned to perfection, and as she ran towards me, she feared she was already too late. For in the distance, out of the swarm of degenerate wasps, she saw one: mad and deranged, with an erect stinger, speeding towards the seductive juice of mango which had flowed like a river down to my penis. And as she let out a violent but silent scream towards God and to the Baby Jesus, the wasp’s angry stinger pierced the tip of my dick, and the rough bee slouched towards it’s death into a pit of eternal flames filled with white-collar criminals, members of the Conservative Party of Canada, murderers, rapists, and of course, other child molesting insects. My Mother froze in her misery, but as she opened her eyes, instead of seeing a crying toddler, or even worse, a dead toddler; all she saw was an unaffected boy, without a hint of pain on his face, sucking clean the seed of a mango. Yes. It was the foreskin. It was the absurd amount of foreskin which saved her baby boy from the wrath of a mad wasp. Her anger towards God and the Baby Jesus quickly transformed into gratitude and worship. Even the swarm of wasps froze still by shock for a moment, like a black cloud in the sky. But as my Mother composed herself and approached me, the wasps retreated into the trees and mourned the death of their fallen comrade. When my mother picked me up off the stoop, she kissed me on my head of flowing curls. And as I giggled and tugged my enormous foreskin like a robin does a giant earthworm from the ground, she gently whispered into my left ear: God does work in mysterious ways, hijito.
And I never heard out of that ear again.