Arts & Entertainment Feature Poetry Who RU

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By: Karoline Gonzalez ~ Student Journalist

As if resentful, an unknown force placed me in my mother’s womb

Where I gave up earlier than most 

And with the weight of the world in my chest danced hand in hand with death,

A feeble thing grows up to occupy space and find refuge within barres of thoughts.

I am of the world and of whoever takes me 

But my first home are the foreign waters that birth la mas bella Quisqueya

Whose history lies on the shoulders of unafraid men and women 

Whose blood was spun into a blanket of freedom wrapped around the astounded gaze of those who constrained our shackles.

I left my roots for unknown soil and colder winds

Where mangoes and limoncillos don’t grow

And soursops and guavas fail to flourish.

Here, the absent palm trees refuse their shade and the sky cries snow instead

As we parted ways, I promised to tell the world of her, 

To make stories from her mountains and dunes of green

I wear her proudly in the slips of my tongue and the accent of my words

I am of the mother of all lands as much as I am of the world.

I am music and harmonies and complex bridges

I am morning coffee and afternoon tea

I am the Caribbean’s sun painted proudly on my pearl brown skin

I am my ancestors blood holding onto untamable curls and graceful hips

I am my mother’s daughter but at times feel like my father’s son

Because I’m meant to like boys but find myself lost in the sin of her tongue

Thus, my mind becomes a battleground similar to my parents’ home

Where they scream bible verses that might cure this identity

And my mom’s agonizing cries pierce the sky with tenacity.

I am sitting in the wooden church pews

Listening to the Sunday sermons of a man who claims to speak for God

My mother listens and bows her head, she’s the one who taught me how to pray

But how do I explain to her that her child has been depressed since age ten?

Would it break her heart to know that at times I long to not be awake?

Or would she tell me that is my lack of faith that makes me flawed?

I carry the weight of the dreams of an immigrant family

The responsibility to make unknown faces proud

Never mind mental stability.

I’m made of fears and perseverance and goals

I am wisdom, art, logic and heart

I am lover, sibling, and friend

I am a story untold like the unread books on my shelves


I am someone’s hope and desire for change

I am tender hands, careful words, long stares, hums and nods

I am a challenge, a problem unsolved and at times Pandora’s box.

I am an unfinished poem, a song left untouched, at times abandoned, too foreign.


I belong to myself as much as I belong in your arms,

I belong to no one and all

And I promised myself this wouldn’t be a love song 

But I find myself falling in love with everything and everyone who steps through the door

So, I write about me and you and I write of the past

Because I breathe and I exist now, and I dance atop ropes of uncertainty.