on the late night

All Father, father of my family

the start of everything I am and the end of everything I ever will be

sometimes

I think of you

late at night when I’m trapped in White Man’s Land

 

I think of everything that I’ve done

the friendships carefully crafted

the books I’ve read

book spines peeled open from reading

all the essays that these hands

hands made in your image

have written.

 

I think of the family that I left behind

in that far away city

like when you would leave Mother Creation

in that little house of white adobe

while you lead men and cattle through the great north.

 

Sometimes I am struck with thinking

in that red clay where you and

Mother Creation

formed this face and this body

round and strong

like a clay pot filled with pure water.

 

I think of all the things I’ve made

of all the things unmade

of the hate that some have for me

of the love of others save for me

 

I think of the words formed

on this mouth that’s a carbon copy of your own

these lips that confront the impossibilities of being

and not being

here in the north.

 

Sometimes I am struck with thinking

all the sunlit day and the cool night

of

this Mexican blood

this Chicana voice, high pitched and loud

this indigenous body

broad and brown and bold

 

Sometimes when I see myself

reflected in those blue eyes

of pale face men who swear

that they love me they love me they love me

my skin enlaced

with that blue tinge

like Malintzin

when she was between the arms

of he who toppled Moctezuma

 

All Father,

 

when I get to thinking

I lay there and I ask myself

Are you proud of me?

 

 

 

 

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