Tres Camarones/Three Shrimp

Dr. Luis Alberto Urrea’s audiobook
Into the Beautiful North
inspired the following lyrics:

Ode to Chava Chavarin*
and the Tres Camarones Team

by Stephany Spencer-LeBaron

What’s in a name?
I can’t say;
but the moniker
Chava Chavarin
rings in my brain today,
though I completed
the novel yesterday.

Like music in rain,
This sonorous name
motivated my muse
to pen poems for play!

So what’s in a name?
Seems Chava Chavarin
is a handle befitting
comedians, actors,
or boxers in a ring.

Then why do I chant
“Chava Chavarin,”
Its sounds resonating
deep in my being?

Chava Chavarin‘s
reverberating ring,
echoes chant-like chimes
inspiring Ms. Muse
to churn forth more rhymes.

It’s provided my day
creative fun time,
like the wind chime
swinging on my Catalina Pine
dinging “ting-a-ling-ling
in tonalities sublime.

I hear Tia Irma incanting,
“Has anybody seen
the amazing human being–
my dream, Chava Chavarin,
in whose memory
I wear this ruby ring?”

Into “the beautiful north,”
of course,
she was heading,
with her tantalizing team,
to find and bring back
the male being
for a wedding
or a bedding —
or for abetting
her courageous daydream —
 especially regarding
 Chava Chavarin.

‘Twas a mission
befitting Nayeli,
the super-quest queen,
and Atomiko,
her self-be-knighted king.

I’m captivated
by their Quixotic scheme:
Like Don Quixote
chasing windmills
in his dream,
they did it their way,
this visionary team!

But thank God for
Chava Chavarin!
In the end,
he saved the day…
helped bring to fruition
the ambitious pipedream
of the Tres Camarones ring
as into the beautiful north
they traveled supreme.

Even the tale’s title
resounds today,
though I closed
the book’s covers

It seems,
after a good read,
the aesthetics remain
to rock the soul
and soothe the brain.
Is this an answer
to what’s in a name?

*(Chavarin = “Cha-var-EEN“)

Dr. Luis Alberto Urea, Professor, and Author of Into the Beautiful North
(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
 Into the Beautiful North is a book written by Luis Alberto Urrea and published by Little, Brown.[1] Written in 2009, it is set in Mexico and then the United States[2]as the main character Nayeli seeks seven men to help defend her small Mexican town against the bandidos who plan to take over.


The town of Tres Camarones is accosted by bandidos at a time when most of the men in the town have gone to America to look for work. After watching The Magnificent Seven, Nayeli, a nineteen year old girl, decides to travel to America to convince seven of the town’s best fighters to come back and fight the bandidos[3]

Nayeli and her three friends Yolo, Vampi and Tacho, begin their journey with the financial support of her aunt Tia Irma, the mayor of the town. Along the way they lose their luggage and a good deal of their money. In Tijuana, a garbage picker and skilled fighter named Atomiko helps them across the border. Once across, Nayeli seeks out the assistance of Matt, a missionary who had come to their town three years in the past and left her his phone number. They find two more warriors in a migrant worker camp.

Tia Irma takes a plane to San Diego to meet up with them, and while she continues searching for four more candidates to bring back to Mexico, Nayeli and Tacho leave for Kankakee, Illinois to look for Nayeli’s father, a former policeman. However, they find that her father has a new family, and she leaves without speaking to him. Meanwhile, Tia Irma has rounded up twenty-seven fighters.

The story ends as a boy on the roof of Nayeli’s taco shop shouts that he sees her in the distance with an army behind her.[4]


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