Dia de Los Muertos
Poem by Olivia Garcia
Narrated by Carlos Puma
Images by Carlos Puma
Celebrating life often centers around a birthday or an anniversary
But celebrating death or the life of someone who has passed
Come only with Dia de los Muertos
Many Latinos know this holiday all too well.
Our culture has taught us to embrace death, at least celebrate it when one
has left and prepare for a rebirth of their lives in some way.
The fall season often prepares Latinos
With the pending arrival of Dia de los Muertos
The highly celebrated tradition was born in Mexico
When families wanted to pay tribute to deceased love ones.
But the tradition quickly grew on the U.S.
As many families headed north, starting new lives here,
They took with them dear traditions like Dia de los Muertos.
It is said that Dia de los Muertos is celebrated on Nov. 1 and 2,
The first to remember deceased children and the second for adults
The days also coincide with the Catholics' All Saints and All Souls Days.
Dia de los Muertos has its roots in Aztec and Mayan tradition.
In present times, activities surrounding Dia de los Muertos include
An artistic or community event where dancers dressed as the dead
Perform ritual or dance performances in honor of the deceased
Artists often share the meaning of the tradition
Through paintings, photographs or stories in galleries
On a personal level, Dia de Los Muertos prompts many
To create altars in the home
They select long-gone loved ones who they wish to honor
and set aside pictures, a Rosary, toys, if it's a child, a tequila or other
special drink, if it's an adult, marigolds, personal and favorite items,
including fruit/food, a favorite album or a watch or ring.
A candle is also use to shine the light on the altar and
Remind the living how much they miss their loved ones.
It is a time of reflection but in a happy or celebratory way.
It is also a way to reconnect to loved ones and celebrate their rebirth into
This Dia de los Muertos, find a way to remember your deceased loved ones
Or go out and take part in a public celebration to let others know
That you feel their lost, you feel their pain
Text by Olivia Garcia