A Note

To my beautiful baby brother:

you have to grow up in an age of social media

and all of its toxins

and it is not your fault.

You have no control over it,

nor do I.

All I want do to is live it for you—

the suicides,

the mass shooting threats,

every day life in boring ass high school —

keep it boring!

School was meant to be that way,

safe enough to be boring.

Not even the white people are safe,

not even the rich people.

My beautiful Puerto Rican brother:

do you fit in? do you like it? do you not?

Tell me more than “ugh.”

I know your innocent face,

your soul-searching eyes

I have seen your heart

and its pure essence

a thousand times.

I just hope I told you enough stories…

about how much you are loved,

and how smart and kind and handsome

you are, my brother — you can do it,

because it cannot last for much longer.

I will take every bullet of some child

calling out for help;

I will relive 9th, 10th — fuck, every grade

if that is what it takes to protect you,

to take up that space of wondering.

The world has changed

in just 10 short years between me and you.

Look at what Facebook has done,

kids sending Snaps 1,000 times a day.

My brother I do not know shit about “SnapChat”

but I know you are more than it,

I promise you.

Everyone is wandering,

looking for more than a screen—

and yet video games have saved you.

Play SmashBros all freaking day

if that is what it takes to save you, my boy,

from giving a damn what people think.

How do I protect you from this world…

this pit of society

that is eating minds and bodies alive?

How do I get you to talk truth?

Who cares “how.”

Know that it is enough to try,

enough to be with yourself,

fully.

Whenever your body yells,

“Trauma!”

“Pain!”

“Greif!”

Cradle every part

and say, “I am here for you, always.”

And remember:

your sister is here for you.

Always.

 

March 29, 2019

thoughts after the party

who says I have to follow him around,

chase a boy that didn’t see me in the first place?

be brave in the moment,

yes,

but no woman should have to go chasing after a man,

force the queen that she is into his face

and push “forever.”

I walk away,

stare at the blank concrete

and wonder, for the millionth time,

“When will he come?”

well, I’m tired.

it is what society has fed us from the womb

It is why boys eye me from across the street

it is how biology may have made us

but no matter–

women can think, too.

to say,

“I am enough,”

is not the same as

believing,

“I am enough.”

the 14 year old girl on Instagram posting selfies

in hopes of some hot guy’s comments:

you are enough.

the sister and the daughter and the grandmother

who have seen the message passed down from generation

to generation, “When are you marrying him?”

Well, “When will you finally realize that you’re married to yourself?”

I am enough.

it’s not that I don’t want that warmth and satisfaction

of knowing I can hold one man for the rest of time

but I don’t want to chase him into doing so.

I am light,

and if I have to wait until someone not only sees it

but looks at me, straight in the eyes

and says they want to be my sun…

that’s okay, too.

June 6, 2015