What Then?

Hill homes and cars and a place in front,

we run a race I lost at birth

with house wheels and buses.

I cross the line

to stand in dingy dark, cast by prestige.


What then do I have with iron in my mouth,

back bent with work and eyes broken

by candle now?

A hard tongue, hard body, hard eyes, I’m adamantine!  

Soft insides do not -- can not -- live across this line.


Recognize me, recognize me, recognize me –

I wear your pelts, speak your words,

recognize me!


I am too icy and cold and cool,

no one can see how empty, how hollow

words have made me,

now that I have been defined.


Recognize me – I don’t grow back


As it is said, it was bliss.

Now that I learned it away --

God! do I wish it back.

I want it back, returned, back:

my dirt, my home, my stupidity.


My kind, my kind-less kind,

do not win gold, nor silver nor bronze.

I have crossed the line

to no applause.

What then do I have?


Someone please

recognize me…

This poem is about: 
My family
My community
My country


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