Inspired by Alison Villasana’s poetry workshop and Melissa Lozada-Olivo spoken word piece, “My Spanish” here is my writing around a my languages. Very drafty, get down draft, but I wrote it for ME.
My Spanish has never been my Spanish
It is my mother’s story of shame, ridicule and pain
An unknown ancestor waiting to be discovered, remembered.
My Spanish brings up many questions
Assumptions of my orgullo
Raised eyebrows about el sonido
Concerned looks of pity
My Spanish, stumbles over itself as if trying to find itself in a dark room
it finds the light
The right palabras
The right sonidos
Other times, it sneaks back under the covers to hide from the dark and avoid the light.
My Spanish is my Nana Josie’s prayers
The blessings of her sopa de fideo y tocino bien cocido
Whispering prayers on my ojos bonitos and my forehead
Reminding me of times that must never be forgotten.