My grandmother made her home here early,
Before the borders were walled,
Before Laredo was a proper baario
In the heat, she cared for seven children.
My grandmother felt prejudice quickly,
Before she settled in completely,
Before she ached for Durango,
In the heat, the preacher's children
Those lily white skinned babes
Pelted her with pebbles,
And taunted her.
My father suffered greatly.
A Mexican man in east Texas, he was
A drop of coffee on a pale table cloth
In the heat, he gripped his pride to his chest tightly.
My father found my mother with ease.
Teaching and working together
White and brown skin joined unworried.
In the heat, my brother's conception was a celebration.
I have been given a privilege,
Features so close to my mother's,
My grandmother does not recognize me as her kin.
In the heat, my family is scrutinized and weary.
O, beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For painful opportunity,
Upheld by social rank!
America, America. Not all races are free.
Though they should, with brotherhood