Father’s Day Poem

Ability to negotiate
Unreachable capacity to listen
Stumble, smart, and noble character
Who has proposed to himself to be my father

From before I was born you were already thinking of me
My steps, my laughs, my falls
Made themselves onto their way on your childish mind
Your teen and adult mind

Your sleepless nights, thoughts and experiences,
Had a descendant
Happy to join you on your days
As a priority and your personal strength

Counting on your experiences,
You went traveling through the whole world
Thinking about how can you make it better
For my arrival and for my roar

Once the day came
Of my inconvenient wish
Of going out, of meeting, of seeing
You were still traveling the world
Running through buildings, hospitals and halls for you to see me

Such wishes, such omens
They materialized in your head
And they projected them in me, your daughter

I cannot remember your excitement
But I can listen to you talking about it
About the moment in which you hold me in your arms
And you cried

The moment in which you feed me
And you couldn’t stop smiling
The moment that I learned how to use the restroom
And you gave thanks

You taught me how to talk
How to use my tongue and pronounce
Words and promises to communicate
To you, mi “pá”

You taught me about family reunion
How to salute, how to give thanks, and how to say goodbye
To not talk back to elders but to learn from them
Thanks to you, my judge

You taught me how to ride a bike
To move my legs at my own rhythm
And forget about the scrapes, falls and cries
Because of you, my heroe

You taught me how to play chess
To think about strategies, to decide attacks
And not let myself give up because of someone else
Because you never do that, my tactician

You taught me about books and lecture
To became interested for the footprints of our ancestors
Writings, encyclicals, and poems
For my intellect that I owe to you, my librarian

You taught me how to sing
To experiment in me the sensation
Of cautivating a closet, a living room, an audience
With your help, my mentor

You taught me to work for what I want
To listen enough
To follow what I pose,
Because you make it possible, my pleader

You taught me how to play the guitar
Musical notes, songs, and hearing technique
Got an entrance to my life
Because of you, my artist

But more than anything
You taught me to think and to love
To make my own mistakes and to not follow them
To laugh, to cry, to confront oneself

To build memories like the ones you build for yourself
To wish, to contemplate, to believe
In the depths of my self

Thank you for believing in me
Even before my existence and
Thank you for thinking of me
Even before your adolescence

Congratulations on this day that celebrates
Your persona, your entity, and your charisma
As a father, who you always have been.
Thank you for being my greatest inspiration.

Poem: El Sol

El Sol by Celeste Ledesma

The garbage man,
Our country once called
Him a no one, a ghost
Of nothing that slipped
In through the night of our
Nation and wouldn’t dare
Leave the shadows.

Our country then called
Him a someone, finally,
A someone who didn’t belong
In civilian clothing,
And so he was shuffled
Into the light of the Vietnam War.

He reflects to anyone who will listen:
I fought for my America, not the one
That looks into the waters of the Rio
And sees the blue eyes of Jesus Christ
But doesn’t see the brown of the muddy tears
He cries…Sabes que , that’s not mud, it’s my sister
And her children crossing the battlefield
Of a different kind of war.

The garbage man,
Our neighbors eventually called
Him Antonio because when
The war was won, or lost,
Or who remembers… they were allowed
To know he was real in the small space
Between night and day.

The garbage man,
Our family called him el sol
Because we saw him through our windows every morning–
Smile shining so bright that you wouldn’t think
He lived in the night, but you would know by the way
He talked about the moon: She was the light he followed
Through his first American night,
And I wonder if anyone cares (I mean wonders)
If when he says moon he means wife.

The garbage man,
I call him grandpa
And he reflects to us: Niños,
Even though I did not know
That you would be mine, you
Were the stars I reached for
When I lived in the night.

Poem: Room


Written by Stephanie Hernandez
It’s just an empty room
A naked window and wooden floors
Beige walls and red doors
The shadows of falling leafs reflect on the window
While the sun rays leak through
With golden light that sways with winter scents
Their smells are lingering content
The wind whispers stories in the walls
Of romantic downfalls
When seasons can’t help but change
Your desires become strange.
For you rather be the scar
Than admit who you are
Now my heart is breaking
For what has been forsaking
Let us breathe through the seas
Of shuttered memories
And watch us fall like the yellow leaf
That covers the concrete of gray disbelief
With the wrong steps, we’ve lost our chances
Missed words and lost romances
That sunk through the wood of our floor
The mistakes that paint our red door
Was I a fool to assume?
That after all we’ve been through;
We’d be more than an empty room

Poem: I Am A Puerto Rican Woman

Flag_of_Puerto_Rico.svgby Sandra Diaz

I Am A Puerto Rican Woman
And You Will Not Experiment On Me.

Gone are the days of eradicating our babies
Sterilization of our population
No consent castration
Making us an empty shell of our former self

Maria’s and Jose’s…
Vanished from Our wombs
Brown Castano skin
Pupils of wonder,
Innocence ripped from within
Our rights strip away with wire hanger abortions
Performed with Pulled the life from us operations

A Boriquen Women
Concentration Elimination
Tidal wave to exterminate the unfortunate subjects
Transplanting Cancer cells on Our Men is no exception
Abuse and torture poison radiation
Social worker house to house
Face to face Discrimination

Thousands of Sisters and Mothers
Told and convinced
That they should no longer conceive
Scaring and Scarring the life out of me

Silent about the Experimental Birth control test trial
Birth place Induced abuse
Couldn’t stop me from coming
My spirit just wouldn’t be stopped
I’m here to speak
Now what.
Back to Back Fertility control
Racist attitude Policy must go
In a Civilized Society this should never take place
Contraception Mis-information
Nevermore will be accepted
By the Beautiful Taino Race

Misleading propaganda was taught in schools
White Picket Fence Promises
Builds mistrust, Are we alliances?

“La Operacion”

Had naive daughters fooled
100 percent; Child bearing age
Two doctors to check if tubes were tied
They’re natural born experts on deceit and lies

Irreversible mistakes
Fifty a Day.
Does not a good decision make
National Intended Genocide
Cannot bring the unborn back

Curvy, intelligent, Feministas
Will not permit; anyone instill
That educated decisions are too complicated
That we don’t have…. Free will does not exist
To just take the Magic Pill

Were here to stay
Our Cultura is Strong
We’ve come a long way
Women of Color, Coming together
We carry on
Where there’s courage, we cant go wrong
We’ve progress with Pride intact
We’ve been quiet for far too long

Too many side effects to be acceptable
So with a shout and a heart felt scream
Were taking Authority on our God Given Dream.
Compliance is not our Grandmothers Option
The unwilling Pioneer found A Solution
Our Resolute is our Revolution

A Puerto Rican Female
Who Believes In
And like I said
You Will Never Experiment On Us

Poetry: Drifting Thoughts

Photo Credit: Scubaexplorer.net

Photo Credit: Scubaexplorer.net

Drifting Thoughts  by Andrea Barreto

I keep my heart where blue kisses gold,
near sand that sparkles like the facets of a diamond.
Sunlight beats down, reflecting off the constant waves.
These waves gleam golden for the day, then fade to an incandescent glow in the silver light of night.
With every splash against the shore, another doubt slips away.

The night brings darkness, a comforting shadow over droning worries made harsh by the day.
Bright moon and faint light soothe lingering thoughts of uncertainty and self-doubt.
In the dark my senses are heightened,
each grain of sand delightfully coarse against my skin,
and each wave lapping gently against my feet as they wash away the troubles of my soul and mend the wounds in my heart.
The sun will return as night gives way to day, but in this moment I am alone in the dark,
and, with the moon, my uneasiness wanes away.

Poetry: The Beautiful Truth

Polet Espinoza

Polet Espinoza, author

Turn the page, perfect symmetrical body

Wearing the clothes you wish you have

With their glowing colored eyes and skin.

Turn the page, expensive make-up ads,

Make your eye lashes look longer than your hair,

Make your flawed skin look flawless

And your lips look bigger than your face.

Turn the page, tips on boys,

They tell you how to act around them

And try to convince you to be something you’re not.

Turn the page, you start feeling neglected

You feel the urge to look like them,

You feel the need to buy their products to look better

And you feel imperfect because they’re in magazines and you’re not.

But no one said there was only one type of girl,

With only one type of perfect

And only one type of beautiful.

And then you notice;

Those girls aren’t real,

They were altered and created with technology;

They’re an image from someone else’s imagination.

But you are real,

Don’t let anyone alter or create your true self;

You’re not an image from someone else’s imagination.

Turn the page, you’re perfect.

Poem: Broken

by Fallon Sousa, 18

rainAs I glance out past my window
and I see these broken skies;
Oh, how they closely mirror
the teardrops in my eyes.

I have listened to such thunder
as I walked beyond the trees,
like a chained, forgotten lover
who hopes only to be freed.

As I fade into the darkness;
each soft whisper in the night,
I pray to gods of silence–
so that none shall hear my cry.

I have left you in a hurry;
you will scarcely hear me breathe
even though I have sought wonder
far beyond my own true need.

Once I’ve realized that I’m lonely,
and you take away my pain–
we can hold hands and walk slowly
through the heavens, in the rain.

Poem: The Island Of The Free

By Ashley Paramo

The first time I went to America

I had high hopes for what I would see.

And even though I enjoyed myself

I did not enjoy how Americans treated me.

“It’s because you look Puerto Rican”

My aunt said to me.

But Puerto Rico is a part of America!

How can Americans discriminate against me?

I like it more in my little island.

My cozy house by the sea.

In Puerto Rico you are not judged or hated against.

Puerto Rico is the place to be.

In America there is only you, him, her and I.

There is no such thing as “we”.

If you fall then you better get up.

For the Americans will step all over thee.

My little island isn’t perfect.

But then again, show me a place that can be.

With shootings, murders and gangs.

Not everything in my island is a warm cup of tea.

But I love my island so, and my island loves me.

So keep your America and its discrimination.

While I enjoy my humble island.

The island of the free.

Poem: Mi Barrio

Poem: Mi Barrio

by Keila Gomez, age 16

Mi barrio, a place that defines the person that I am. Mi barrio where I am from. The place that defines the way I talk, the way I walk and the way I think. My neighborhood that made me tough, the neighborhood that taught me to not let sticks or stones break my bones. Mi barrio that taught me of love and family. My place that was in my comfort zone and I was in my comfort zone with those around me. Mi barrio where I ran up and down throughout my childhood. My neighborhood that taught me of self value and humbleness. Mi barrio who knows where I come from and what I am about. Mi barrio where I learned how to be myself. My neighborhood where I grew up in. Mi barrio where I learned to be respectful and kind. Mi barrio, a place that defines the person that I am.

Poetry: My Name

My Name – Ellazahe
Ellazhe is originally spelled Alize. Ellazahe is an alcohol.
I got my name cause my dad just came home and said her name will be Ellazahe.
I have many nicknames:
Lizard, Zahezahe, Zaheweezze.
I got them randomly
but my favorite nickname is Zahezahe because my great grandma would only call me that.
I love the way she would say that after she died no one is allowed to call me Zahezahe.
If I changed my name, it will be something easy
and a name people can actually say every time I start a new school.
It will be Elizabeth, Eliza, Ellazhe.
I get embarrassed all the time, “all eyes on me.”
But if I did change it right now I think it will be Ash because that’s what my grandpa wanted to name me.
I was supposed to be born on Ash day, so he wanted my mom to name me Ash.
By Ellazahe Richards