Sun, 04/30/2017 - 11:09 -- Nirmala

  America, 1980'sImmigration is open, people flock in like birds migrating back to the states after winter. Among the fleet is a dark skinned man, a man who I would know to be my father. Escaping the impoverished resources of his native country to America the great. Oh but greatness was not all he found.  He found prejudice, he found intolerance, he found inflation. But he also found an education, a job, a family Oh America the land of the free and the land of the brave , only the song doesn't include America the land of the  impoverished, the land of eternal struggle  America, 1999Me. My baby brown eyes, and my brown skin born into an economic boom.My first screams are heard by the dark skinned man and his wife. My mother and father, both immigrants, bringing in the first generation of America into their family.The American dream was accomplishedOr was it They could give their child a better life than they had, a better education, a better home But could they?  America early 2000's I walk in the streets, four feet tallUnaware of the struggles my parents are facing Everything was good, oh the childhood oblivionDaddy is yelling, mom is crying, but why?What's a mortgage?It's ok I pretended not to hear so everything was fineDad has to leave every week for work, why?I wait for him at the airport every Sunday, i miss my dad Everything if fine Oh America the great  America, the Great Recession 2008I'm saying goodbye to my house in the sunshine state and waving hello to the Statue of Liberty This is my new homeDaddy won't have to travel anymore, I'm happy Daddy is home for a few months I wonder why, but I don't complain Mom is not staying at home anymore she says we need the money I cry when she leavesDaddy has to leave again every morning Both my parents are gone till night I miss them Oh America the great  America 2017I stand five foot six, brown skin, black hairDonald trump is president, muslims are banned, oh America the great I look like a Muslim, will I be prosecuted?Would I face this prosecution back in the land of my native country? Indeed, America is the great melting pot but how if you get rid of one ingredient, the pot will not taste the same without itBlacks are still being targeted, oh America the greatMy father is dark, will he be jailedMy father found success in America but he always says:"if you are not born in white in America you are black" I didn't understand until now  So i wonder about "America the great" " the land of the free" (But nothing is free in America)If America is so great Why was Donald Trump elected president, when the majority voted for another If America is so great Why is it that my parents work so hard only to find they can't send me to my top college because they simply cannot cover the expenses? I see the apology in their eyes, and regret to say I bitterly see the resentment in mine What is there to say, oh America the great  The ambiguity of America is notLost on me My father worked found employment, climbed the spiked rungs of the ladderReached all the way up to  the upper middle class but yet the consumerism of America has produced a generation that only wants more and more and more, I see it in myself So to say America is great is not wrong, we have come a long way but we have far to go I do not mean to dismiss the grandeur of America but to reveal the struggle to maintain it Oh America is great, I am proof of that, the American dream fufilledAs I go off to college in the fall I want to see the darker skinned man, my father, my provider, with some weight off his shouldersBut something tells me some weight will fall off, but only to mine The weight called debt But we can fix this, education is the backbone to America Republicans, Democrats, black, white, brown, the truth is they're all AmericanSo why not come to consensus to make a better future for our children There is no need to Make America great again, no America is great, the only thing we can do is to make it better  America 2018Oh America the great Please: Be greater than your history 

This poem is about: 
My family
My country


Need to talk?

If you ever need help or support, we trust CrisisTextline.org for people dealing with depression. Text HOME to 741741