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Mexico's Celebration, Cinco de Mayo (May 5th) Remembered in Verse

Updated on April 11, 2012

Puebla: Elegant city under the Volanoes.

An artistic and imaginative rendering of the Battle of Puebla (Cinco de Mayo)
An artistic and imaginative rendering of the Battle of Puebla (Cinco de Mayo)

The Day the French got a Bloody Nose!

Surely no one needs reminding why May 5th is an important day in Mexico?
You do??
OK, in brief, May 5th, 1862, was the day a Mexican army defeated and routed the French in Puebla, the first defeat that European nation had seen in more than 50 years.
It was such a resounding victory for Ignacio Zaragoza (over French general, Laurencez) that it is cherished in Mexican collective memory as one of their most compelling events.
As regular readers will know, this author spent many happy years in Mexico, so every year I publish something in memory of my time - and their great battle - in this great nation.

Not on your nelly!

Here I am in Acapulco;
you should see the views!
Though I miss me fish 'n chips
wrapped in the Evening News.

They've got mangoes and coconuts,
and an avocado pear.
But I miss me game of darts,
down at the Bull and Bear.

There's dusky senoritas,
full of lust and sin.
But I miss me English lass,
with the rosebloom on her skin.

There's sunlit, tropic beaches;
blue lagoons and coral reefs.
But I miss the morning frost
on London's misty heaths.

Yes, I miss old Blighty's charms -
like the people and the telly.
You ask me when I'll return...
Leave this? Not on your nelly!

(Americans won't be familiar with some of the expressions
They'll be on Google!)

South of the Border

When fighting with the human race;
When running headlong from a place;
When I'm exhausted by the pace,
I can always find solace:
South of the border.

When I'm feeling sad and blue;
When I'm sick from loosing you;
When I've lost the friends I knew,
I can always start anew:
South of the border.

When I'm old and going gray;
When of hope there's not a ray;
When I'm just to tired to pray,
It's a new and sunny day:
South of the border.

When old Gabriel sounds his horn;
When I make room for new life born;
When it's time to rest the old and worn,
There's a few who'll smile and mourn:
South of the border.

Lost in Mexico

What has become of Hubert,
since he gave them all the slip?
Since he screwed them down in 'Vegas,
was he forced to take a trip?

Is he hiding out in Rio,
watching ghekkos in the rain,
or clap-clapping to Flamenco
in the sunnier parts of Spain?

What has become of Hubert,
since he beat the bloody bank;
since he left that rental Lincoln
In a Texas airport rank?

Is he chasing senoritas
in a sveldt Las Hadas bar,
Or he's shipped aboard some 'packet
that smells of herrings and old tar?

Where can young Hube be skulking?
We know he had to take a hike,
before the pit boss down at Caesar's
had his head put on a pike.

But we'll miss old bloody Hubert;
his humor, wit and verve.
Hey! let's do the same and join him!
if any of youse got the nerve.

To Kill Ya (Tequila)

I met my match in Mexico;
in steamy Puerto Vallarta.
Got legless 'neath the tropic moon;
made love lit by it after.
I don't know why I was so rash;
I'm suffering from remorse -
It must have been that tequila,
or maybe the chili sauce?

Next day Conchita called around;
I had a turrible 'crudo.
I wiped the moisture from my brow:
Stopped slurping down 'menudo.
She stood there with a huge, dark chap.
That sticky day in December.
I mumbled, "who the hell is he?"
She smiled, "Papa, don't you remember?"

"You hired the mariachis, dear;
you paid a great mordida,
for them to play for mum and dad;
I became your prometida!"
I gulped, "prometida, what is that?"
She frowned, "don't tease me, honey."
Then papa pulled his machete out.
It all cost me heaps of money.

A narrow escape, my dearest friends,
the night I dropped my guardo:
the damn tequila and chili sauce
nearly had me entrapado.
So when you visit Mexico
to find some luscious senoritas,
don't mix amor with chili sauce
and Herradura chugged in litres.

(A sad and nearly true tale).

Hola Mexico! Que te divertas este Cinco de Mayo y pone un gran fiesta com mucho tequila para los heoes de Puebla!

poesia de Charged Particles
by Robert Challen (Hubert!)


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    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 4 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Hola querida: Thanks for the nice comment. I see an email from you so will answer that...It's weird answering on comments from one hub to another: yours, mine and the others

      Bob xo

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 4 years ago from North Texas

      These are really superb! Nope, I didn't know what Cinco dy Mayo was about, though I'm sure it was presented in various of my Spanish language classes back in elementary school -- who can remember so long ago?

      Going to share these poems this Christmas morning as they are great. Hope you check your email now and then . . take care Bobby, and have a peaceful happy day! xox

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 6 years ago from UK and Mexico

      What a relief! I thougth I might receive some negative stuff about the land jes south of you.


      About due for another shitkicker yarn aren't we??

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Wow! I have a new favorite! Up and across the board!

    • profile image

      Sunnie Day 6 years ago

      Duh...memory of...Sorry...but when you go back..haha

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 6 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Hi Moon...I bet you know a heap more than me by now. I will be down there in October, I'll stay in touch...


    • moonfroth profile image

      Clark Cook 6 years ago from Rural BC (Canada) & N of Puerto Vallarta (Mexico)

      Bob, you lusty old dog--I'll bet the beaches of Mexico (never mind the senoritas) were never the same after YOU thrashed thru them! And Lanzy--I've lived in Mexico for 6 months of the year for some time now, so I know a bit about the country and its people and its values. Bob's depiction is right on. Bob, your status as my Renaissance Man remains unchallenged.

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 6 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Yes, it's a big party and national holiday in Mexico.


    • profile image

      Sunnie Day 6 years ago

      Sounds like you are having a great time! Enjoy! :)

      Went to Cinco de Mayo celebration one year in San first grandbaby was born...they had to give us a police escort to the hospital..could not get through..Such joy and celebration for sure..

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 6 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Thanks Lenzy Bob

    • Lenzy profile image

      Lenzy 6 years ago from Arlington, Texas

      This was a fun, interesting hub about Cinco de Mayo. I really never new what it was about. Your poem was very good. Lenzy