Tuesday, June 9, 2009

La Hora Mixteca

The voice trembled with anguish.

“Please,” Esmeralda Santiago pleaded, calling into a radio show here aimed at the poorest of Mexico’s emigrants, indigenous people from the southern state of Oaxaca. “This is for Sylvia Santiago. Please, if you can hear us, call. Our mother is worried because we have not talked with you in a while.”

Filemón López, the host of the show, listened and nodded. He had heard such heartache before. The woman spoke first in Spanish and then repeated her plea — breaking down in sobs — in Triqui, one of Oaxaca’s indigenous languages.

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