Birthright

Please give me
another term
because what
I’m observing
is best described
as absurd

I am
first generation
born and bred
in the good ol’
U.S. of A.
I’ll be quick
to say
Te amo Peru
but
it doesn’t stop
my heart
from beating
red
white
and blue.

Walls are built
at the border
to establish
so called order.
Illegal aliens
are invading
but the skies
are clear.
They are people
undocumented
not thieves
El Chapo
or rapists
as stereotypes
would have you
believe.

I am
an anchor baby,
parents surviving
on 25 cent yogurts
bare floors
as a mattress
working
working
working
manual labor
lost in translation
being their Sacajawea
their motivating force
sacrificing their all
so we can have the most.

Immersed
to the culture,
celebrating the 4th
of July
waiting for fireworks
to illuminate the sky
1st place in the Geography bee
stretchy pants
for an all you can eat
Thanksgiving feast,
Deep roots in the Garden state
Proud Scarlet Knight
R.U. all day
Competitive
driven to succeed
defying the odds
23 with a master’s degree
paying it forward
teaching children
to be all
that they can be
my subject is Spanish
so it’s
Si se puede

El puebloUnido

Jamás será

Vencido

bridging the gap
to prevent
ignorance
the chance to attack.

I am the
American Dream
exercising my free speech
holding steadfast
to the pursuit
of happiness
life
and liberty.

A tale

Living the cement

American dream

millions chasing

the kite’s

Blue, red, white

Tail

Only to meet

Blood sweat tears

Harsh reality.

Parenting in shifts

Breeding soldiers

of struggle

Papi couldn’t learn

English quickly

Factory life

Gasoline worker

At night

Smell embedded

In his hands

Ser buen pobres

is what he taught

me, in another

life you were a

Ñusta princess

somehow

we inherited

Poverty, but we

descend from

royalty

make dignity

Your throne.

Mami reeked

Of onions

Night shift

Work beast

Don’t touch me

She said

Let me wash up

Wash the

Blood

Sweat

Tears

Making ends meet

Was always

their fear.

White oven waiting

with dinner

we all ate alone.

Independence day

Was every day

sisters raising

brothers,

brothers raising

sisters.  The unlucky

ones were all

on their own.

Sewed up glasses

Ham cheese

sandwiches

these are

some of my least

favorite things.

An invisible hand

chased all of us

pointing out

our differences

The accents

Holey clothes

Kmart blue

Light special

Shoes

The lack of

Snack packs.

All used as

Ammo for a

taunting attack.

A boat would bring

Those far, near to

Hotel Manor.

I saw my blood

Sweat

They would leave.

Finding myself

In an ocean

of salty

tears

That’s where the

hand tried to drown

me, pushing me

Under to not

breathe success

I glimpsed and saw

We were all there

My brothers

My sisters

Soldiers

With determination

In our eyes

The hand couldn’t

Stop us all

We were

On the rise

Together holding hands

Taking back our

freedom.

United we stand

planting The seeds

for our money trees

Red picket fences

Or whatever

We damn well pleased.

I never did get that

Crown

but I was blessed

with a voice

to make injustice

frown.