"Hey Girl What's your name?!" You exclaim As I walk by you plain in a grocery line I don't stop, roll eyes Continue to walk away Go peacefully about my day "Didn't mean to be rude, I just mean you look good. So I just gotta know where you from" Take a deep breath, don't engage Don't fill yourself with rage No time or energy to explain That the blood in your veins is too thick to be boiled To tell the story of where your roots are soiled. "But you look so exotic - With round eyes and hips thick - Tell me, what are you mixed with?" What am I mixed with? As if I could be summed up in two parts As if that could encompass all that is in my soul in my heart And let me attest, that these assets - a gift I have with been blessed - are gifts I have inherited From my mother, and her mother and father's mother And all the mothers before These hips, children they bore "But just tell me, very quickly, What exactly is your ethnicity?" So again, I take a deep breath This question, so simple and yet so complex Should I take the time to explain That my ancestors - from this land they came And where I am from, not so easily determined With the borders that have been drawn And the lives that they've burdened And here I am, wanting to shoo you away Anxiously waiting to go about my day So in attempts to end your requests I say "My name was a gift to me my parents gave To allow me to know that my own road I would pave In my blood, filled in my veins Is lands of desert skies and tropical rains Before settlers and colonizers came and took this land It was once known as the kingdom of Atzlan Here I was born, and here I remain So show some respect the next time you ask a girl her name"
Top: Repurposed Shirt
Artwork By: Kim Smith & Ginger Dunill
Photos by: Salpy Talian
Location: Silverlake, Los Angeles