THE INSURGENCE of CHAN SANTA CRUZ
BOOK TEN: THE BOOK of SKULLS
In 1931, Quintana Roo was disestablished... divided among Yucatan and Campeche, fulfilling the first step of the Separados' dream. But annexation proved an unsatisfactory experiment. The Territory was restored and, in 1974, elevated to full sovereignty as a State of Mexico.
And Santa Cruz del Bravo passed with Chan Santa Cruz into the memory of its inhabitants... for why may there not be some cousin of don del Muerte whose charge is the vanished among kingdoms and cities? The question of the capital having proven irreconcilable, Mexico decreed that Felipe Carrillo-Puerto be honored... though Quintana Roo had been, for him, the Promised Land denied, to which he could not make his escape. But the sublevados, old men now, and tired of their fight, allowed this to be an acceptable thing for, while the martyred Governor was one of those Yucatecos, he had, at least, taken the position that the land belonged to those who work it. So Santa Cruz would find peace as the town of Felipe Carrillo Puerto, but the functions of the capital were relocated to Payo Obispo which, itself, was renamed to honor the memory of the old Mayan jefe, Chetumal. And now even Chetumal... though the government capital... lives under the shadow of Mexico's thriving new megalopolis on the isle of Kankún, that very spit of land despised for centuries as fit for only the sharks, the fleas and pirates. Its long white beaches, beloved only by birds and tortoises, are now chok-a-bloc with the roasting bodies of the European and American dzulob, and many old chicleros and fishermen have thrown aside their nets and machetes to wait tables and sell suntan oil, beer and photographic film.
Progress... the ruin of the old ways, assert the mazehualob elders. Radios and motor-cycles, barbed machines that fabricate tortillas and grind henequen; so Juan de la Cruz has predicted such metal slaves shall turn upon their masters at the close of the Fourth World!
Generals May and Vega divided the chicle concessions north and south, although their fortunes declined during the depression years and, owing to new sources of Oriental gum, would never quite recover. With money harder to come by for all, Mexican soldiers took to robbing the chicleros and the mazehualob blamed Francisco May for collaborating with the Federales. The Speaking cross, therefore, was carried off to Xcacal Guardia, a village at some distance from what was now Carrillo Puerto and some of May's own Oficiales entered into a rebellion, independently taxing chicle and working for or against foreign anthropologists as money dictated. It was at this time that one Mexican described May, uncharitably, as "a General in slippers", another explorer as an "oily Mongolian" enamoured of Dutch cashmere and huaraches with heels as high as any to be found in a Kankun disco half a century later. May's proclivities for money-finding developed to a sensitivity only a little less than Bravo's own... not unsurprisingly, for the General, in his own manner, was that tutor who established all standards by which the Territory would be governed.
The influence of the uay has lessened, although never fully disappeared. In 1943, one of May's rebel Captains killed the wife of the Scribe of the Cross, alleging the old woman to be the black dog who had sexually assaulted several young men by night... in the morning, these presented their raw, swollen penises as evidence... but loyalists of the Scribe, Apolinaro Itza, countered that the Captain was jealous of the couple's influence upon the foreign archaeologists. Forty years later, a formidable trade in "sacred papers" had grown up. Today, the sacred sermons of Juan de la Cruz may be for sale on any streetcorner in Kankun... among, of course, many impostures... available to any fraternity brother of Oregon or dental assistant of Ohio willing to part with the price of a case of Corona.
Quintana Roo, so pitiless upon the young... be their skins pale or dark... somehow endows the strongest with a prodigious span of years. So the venerable Carlos Plank was ninety six, still serving as Senator from Sonora when don del Muerte finally collected him. Francisco May and Juan Bautista Vega survived until 1969; May passing in March during his ninety second year and the shipwrecked Cozumeleño four months later. A monument to their exploits was erected in the plaza of Felipe Carrillo Puerto but, as with Ignacio Bravo, there would be no memorial to Silvestro Kaak. During the next month, July, this withered jefe... now eighty seven years of age and four times widowed... swung in his hammock in Akbal with a small battery-powered radio tuned to the English-language station from Belize while his grandnephew went out to search or a missing pig. Silvestro dozed, his eyes occasionally opening in comprehension of the words he'd learned across the Rio Corosal, trading his wood and chicle for ammunition and, in later days, managing such funds as remained from the saddlebags of El Chacol... the first and the second. Therefore, he was able to understand much of the excitement of the Belicean broadcaster playing a transmission from a man of the Americans, describing the steps that he took across the moon. "I, too have flown with eagles," Silvestro agreed and then died and, when his nephews and his grandchildren divided his possessions ten days later, none knew of the instructions left with an attorney of the British Colony to deploy what was, by now, a great fortune on the day, still distant, which the Tatoob had decreed.
His relatives divided his clothes and a few hundred pesos, his precious guns, a mule and other livestock, his hammock, furniture and radio. The old Carrancista watch was given to Felipe, the youngest, most useless, a boy who had left Central for Merida with all its vices.
"It is a broken thing, but there is gold in the case; perhaps someone will give you a few pesos for drink in Merida," taunted Luis, the last surviving of Silvestro's sons, and an old man, himself. Felipe held the old watch, measuring its weight, frowned and rewound the mainspring... and, promptly, it began to tick again, having remained silent no more nor less than fifty two years, one complete New Fire cycle.
"Somebody merely forgot to teach the old fool how to wind it," said Felipe, pocketing Carranza's watch. "Why should I sell it to the Mexicans. There is hardly any rust and it should outlast a Timex!"
"A bargain's a bargain," shrugged Luis. "What is that Negro saying?" Having had first choice of Silvestro's leavings, he had appropriated the radio for himself, but his own dealings with the boxuinicob of Belize and their language were far less than those of his father. Therefore, the meanings of the words of the American President, declaring that his resistance to the Vietnamese insurgency "may be one of American's finest hours" wholly escaped Luis and the rest of the funeral party who pantomimed the English words and windmilled their hands until Aniceto, the clever one, suggested: "Someone find a good Mexican station."
Oldest of all the mazehualob, Mariano Chable remains he whom don del Muerte finds most elusive. This slippery old fellow may still be found about Idznacab pueblo (the estanción is no more, having been divided and parceled out by the licenciados after the death of Armando Feliz, the great house having become a tenement burned to the ground in the last year of siglo veinte) where he is said to be ninety, or perhaps seventy, or even one hundred and fifty years old. The spirited young daughter of Paco Pozo having aged and passed into the wall of don del Muerte, old Mariano sips rum in his hammock and reminisces about bygone days, so much more vital than our own. "Perhaps I ought to take another wife," he has been heard to say, for the delights and tribulations of newlyweds lend spice to even the blandest of ages.
He whom cannot be seen (and of whom information can be obtained only with great coaxing and hesitant trepidation) is Miguel Chankik. There are, of course, some few gatos del monte remaining in Quintana Roo, but their numbers are thought to have declined under the relentless advance of progress. We of the last days prefer out tigers kept in zoos, which illusion radiates scant comfort as the hours of Juan de la Cruz grow cold and short, and the shadows of don del Muerte's tzompalli are lengthened.
For the end of times draws near... the seating of the twelfth Ahau stone occurred in 2000 AD, meaning that the apocalyptic eighth Ahau would have been coincidend with the dzulob Millennium, had commencement of the Christian end of time been set a little off from that span of sixty centuries named by Bishop Ussher. (In fact, certain Americans of sympathy with the gente decente argued... as a consequence of differences of correlations between the King James and Gregorian calendars... the Antichrist was "ushered" in on Election Day, 1996!) But all of this is merely preparatory, to the true Christian... whose Fourth World will culminate on Christmas Eve, 2012, thirteen baktuns from the seat of creation in the summer of 3114 BC and a transport of all... dzulob, boxuinicob and mazehualob… will take place a few days or a few years thereafter.
@Easter 2017 elderly Italian woman, the last born in 19th century has passed away
For certain elderly men of knowledge have told American scribes that our world will pass "...in 2000 and a little..." Anno Domani. The clock at San Gervasio in Valladolid will cease as abruptly as the watch of the Tatoob, but none shall know how to restart it. The Franciscan Sisal church, also in Valladolid, shall collapse into the cenote over which it has been constructed; there shall manifest, out of the underworld beneath its ruins, a fearsome old woman who feeds children to her serpents. Finally, the images of feathered serpents shall take life and rise off of the walls of Chichen Itza and elsewhere... wrathful gods shall step out of their stelae and, perhaps, even the modern statues of heroes in Mexico and Chetumal, even across the world and in Washington, D.C. of los Estados Unidos, will climb down from their pedestals as wrathful Golems liberated from their cage of stone. The sky shall begin fading, starting from the benevolent red east towards the black Western badlands; stars shall be rolled up as an old mat at year's end, and the universe will collapse upon itself, as the scientists have also predicted, leaving only Gloria above and Hell beneath... and between them, perhaps, the soul of "Juan Aguila" in ceaseless, useless flight.
It may be also... when an aged, decayed cosmos has condensed unto a single point, a sphere of lustrative fire hotter than a million million whirling radioactive particles (atoms, quarks, dominions even, buzzing as the bees of that practical Handbook by which Sherlock Holmes ultimately foiled Germany's intrigues)... there shall follow the explosive genesis of the Fifth World; a new, purr order of strange seas and austral constellations.
And perhaps new warriors and ballplayers shall step out from the tzompalli of the clefted galaxies, wearing their ancient hip cuirasses of leather and reeds but clutching, also, the bodies and the bones of saints, with which to batter whirling balls of minerals and gas against the walls of epochs.
And from these ranks of celebrants a mighty exclamation shall arise... "Bix cabaal?"... how, now, is the road?
And from the cleft twixt Hell and heaven, the starry path whose axis is the tree of Akbal, whose roots thrust deep into the Otherworld, out of the skulls of tzompalli baja tierra, and whose leaves are the throats of deathless and insurgent multitudes arise, also, this responding cry...
"Long, and white!"
CHAPTER SEVEN (caption)
RETURN to HOMEPAGE – “THE INSURGENCE of CHAN SANTA CRUZ”
RETURN to GENERISIS HOMEPAGE