Essay on Rob Baker 's Jimmy Santiago Baca

828 Words Feb 24th, 2016 4 Pages
Rob Baker’s Jimmy Santiago Baca: Poetry as a Lifesaver (Baker 858), writes an interesting story of Chicano poet Jimmy Santiago Baca (who goes by Baca in the story), and the amazing account of a young man’s start at life at the very bottom of society’s ladder, through his many trials and tribulations throughout childhood to his inevitable incarceration in the state’s prison system. Baker takes it one step further in his story as he provides a glimpse of not only the hell this young man must endure while in prison but the chance meeting of an author working through a church outreach program for inmates that forever changed his life. The message of the story to me is that everyone has value and a voice. A person, such as Baca in this story, will go through a period of self-destruction, hit rock bottom and with courage find redemption.
It seemed like Baca was destined for either greatness or utter failure from the day he was born. Baker accounts that Baca’s mother was bitten by a snake prior to giving birth and a healer proclaimed that her child would possess many abilities. It is an interesting backstory, but Baca’s rocky start actually began with a simple case of abandonment from his parents at a young age. The grandparents stepped in for a brief period of time but that did not help the young man, but made the situation worse. Compounding an already bad situation, Baca dropped school as he wasn’t doing well in his classes. He is even quoted in Baker’s story as saying,…

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