I want to start this post off by saying how grateful and humbled I am by all the amazing comments and support I’ve been getting for this feature series! I honestly never thought I’d be comfortable enough to share pieces that I’ve written with a whole bunch of people, but ya’ll have made this experience absolutely amazing! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the love.
This post is the first of three poetry pieces! I was really nervous about this assignment so when my professor gave us prompts we could use to think about the work we wanted to create, I jumped at them. So this poem is inspired by Ray Gonzalez’s poem “Praise the Tortilla, Praise the Menudo, Praise the Chorizo.” I will share a link to it here, so you can check out my inspiration. But beyond that, I really hope you all enjoy this piece.
Let’s get started!
I Believe In
I believe in braids, three strands woven
together at the back of my head,
my prima pulling and tugging at my
stubborn mane with her pointed nails
to make me presentable to
vecinos and visitantes.
I believe in braids that morph into
a crown, pushing me to embody my
royal title of princesa,
why did I carry it quietly?
I believe in arepas and their power of
healing, how the melted mantequilla
dripped from my fingers,
the gooey, hot cheese inside
my mouth is enough
to remind me of the person gone
from this table, the empty chair at the head
only a mirage in the desert
now filled with the loving memory
of the matriarch who once held court and
reigned over us, strict yet as warm as
the cocoon inside her arms.
I believe in coming home, stepping
into the room that holds your
ten year old memories ready to embrace
you at twenty-four, falling
into the arms of a friend lost to tiempo
and cambio and miles of separation.
But mostly I believe in returning
to your country, the one you had to flee
as it burned to pieces in front of you, dancing
to merengue on confetti filled streets that
shimmer with triumph under the sun.
So that’s it for this post! Please let me know what you think in the comments! I think, from this class, I am most proud of my poetry because it’s the medium most out of my comfort zone. I really hope you all enjoyed it 🙂