Sunday, September 10, 2006


A youn girl stood with hands
deep in her jean pockets
gathering lint seeds
between small fingers.

She stood
waiting to write letters on a clean blackboard
in unforgiving chalk.

She listened
trying to understand
the words.
Words that ran together,
fell apart
and broke like the mismatched plates
in her mother's cupboard.

She learned words,
ugly words,
words like illegal alien, wetback
and other words that made her cower
on the playground.

A woman stands
where the young girl stood
to speak wrds.
Words that run together,
fall apart
and break like the mismatched plates
in her own cupboard.

She's learning new words,
ugly words,
hurting words
words like
pocha, traitor
and other words that make her
angry and
because nothing has changed.

-Lenora Castillo

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