Mama, just killed a man
Put a gun against his--
It was a knife mama
Put inside my stepfather’s abdomen
But he deserved it.
He deserved the wounds,
The two-round battle with cancer,
But he never deserved a pardon by death.
Grew up with a white supremacist because a,
I think he’s white father,
Opt out and swapped in an exchange
Because prison was better than your baby girl,
Because when you came back years later
And claim love
And I don’t believe so you leave again
And say I pushed your absolutely dead-beat away.
Pulled my trigger now he’s
Still in my home,
The trailer with holes in the floor,
You know the one where me,
A nine year old girl,
Witnessed a massacre:
Fists and blood; drug slinging;
Breath beaming with HA they call it sobriety.
But it’s one thing to stay from toxins like alcohol
And another to abstain from love.
Left the love with the many so the state said
Your babies gotta go
Because you didn’t pay the water bill again,
No electricity again.
Mommy and daddy, we haven’t eaten a meal
Since god knows when
That wasn’t moldy bread, dry ramen or expired cans.
You said I can’t, I will--
I will survive despite you, to spite you--
I like you in an orange jumpsuit.
My abuelo didn’t come to America
For me to live the American nightmare--
Surprise! I’m Latina and I attend
What do you call it?
A school run by white privilege?
No, we’re children from every corner of the world
With many backdrops and backgrounds
But I won’t lie, they do seem better than barely getting by.
Privileged kids everywhere but over half of them
Are missing half or more of their parental units.
The kids who got here made it happen--
They forged the mind from test booklets and papercuts.
We made success because we made it.
Not because we violated lines, waited for my words to say it.
Empower the youth, the old
By working hand in hand.
We came here together,
We find victory together
But some people wield words like weapons:
a knife, a noose, a nimble dose of cyanide--
Name it, use it-- words are an object of homicide
Because we’ve let words evolve into the human race--
A race that never stops running but never moves forward.
So let my steps be the first
I’m original, so be it.
Mama, life had just begun.
And it goes on and on.
When I make mistakes,
I’m not overwhelmed by my past
Or metamorphing to fit my pain
I’m saying the game, the cycle ends now
But now I’ve gone and thrown it all away
Is not my punchline--
I rewrite and edit my own song.