Chiaroscuro County

You raised me, seven-five-zero-six-three,

Biryani, and sense of community.

“Most diverse zip code,” statistically.

Thank you for painting me the way I am.


The cadence of the immigrant voices,

Each built with diversifying noises,

Has sketched out for me so many choices

For how my tongue can say “poetry slam.”


Thank you for using the light and the dark,

A polychromatic, beautiful art.

You kindled my love-of-languages spark.

For that I am eternally grateful.


Thank you, mulțumesc, et merci, también,

For all the ways that I can move my pen,

For helping me with my spice tolerance,

Though I can’t stomach more than a mouthful.


The recipe for the melting pot dream

Was not made by an English-speaking team.

Language is now a part of my bloodstream

Because of seven-five-zero-six-three.

This poem is about: 
My community


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