Poemas Del Mundo

“Where I Come From” By Brenda Dao

I come from cultural wealth that embraces bodies of oceans and rice fields

Providing endless fruit while hiding behind that sweet shield

Not yet long before war erupted and Agent Orange was released

Nothing left but to flee and survive

But those that stayed behind still had hope in their eyes

I come from acculturation with a taste of westernization

Overpowered by people with the idea of colonization

No longer a mixture of cultural wealth

Assimilation was the only way to not get mixed in the between

A new culture is born

I come from beauty standards that fit the dominant eyes

Where my yellow skin must blend into this white disguise

They say the whiter you are… the richer you are

I guess white skin treats you to endless caviar

I come from this notion that I will always be

a stranger from another shore

“Where are you really from?”

as if I hadn’t heard that a hundred times before

I walk the hallways with second guesses from others

“She probably stutters while she speaks English while she stutters”

I come from the fruit of my parent’s labor

Their hard work sets the bar for  my achievements

Little did I know

It was just another form of oppressive treatments

Pitting racial groups against one another

But alas, the Model Minority was discovered

What a myth that was

as self doubt and expectations were among us

The struggle that I fear becomes real

Living in a world that makes me numb to the feel

Battling days where I am picking sides

Is today going to be white as I am throwing away my pride?

But I come from so much wealth

Wasn’t my culture just plain enough?

“Yo soy.” By Ciria Alvarez Valle

Yo soy inmigrante, yo soy Mexicana, yo soy indocumentada.

I am the ”X” in “xicanita”reclaiming a name and  history,

that wasn’t always told to me.

The X that doesn’t listen to what the dominant narrative—

what the text books have to say.

I am the “I” in “illegal” as in I am somebody and I deserve full equality.

I am the cries during protests and rallies screaming,

”Undocumented! Unafraid! Undocumented and here to stay!”

I am the humanity when you build a wall—

despite the hatred I choose to stand up tall.

Choosing to stand against hate that tries to penetrate my community

but, I am the farmworkers clap in the morning to bring unity.

I am the passion, worth ethic, and pride that runs deep

because let’s face it, they call me a DREAMer but I am the one who never sleeps.

Child of the Sun  by Juan Rodriguez

There was a time

when I was scared,

and would stare

at the mirror

in horror

of the color.

I would measure

the elongated nose

that was sculpted with

the gnarled hands of

indifferent deities,

and chisel sharp lines

out of it, the blood

of the conquered

and conquerors

would gush and stain

clothing, as the rage

in my veins would

force my thick lips into

the molecules

out of the polluted air.

Maybe it was the arsenic

in the lawn’s soil,

or the lead in the white

walls that would disfigure

my internal earths,

but that very same toxic

would make me ponder,

and ponder, and ponder

until one day the reflection

in the glass distorted itself into

images of forgotten people

with forgotten names,

and brown eyes containing

galaxies of light

reminding me

that I am a child of the sun.