I Am: a Slam Poem about being Half Brown
I am half Native and half Spanish.
That is half indigenous and half colonizer.
I am half Latino and half American.
I am half tradition and half new generation.
I am half my people and half no one’s people.
I am always half but never fully enough for either people.
Never enough and yet still more than enough,
Because my halves make a whole warrior,
A warrior for the voices who were silenced.
The lives that were lost.
The families that were murdered,
The women who were stolen.
Statistically, I shouldn’t be here—and yet, here I stand.
A full voice.
Because when you are half, you are seen as less than.
When you are half, you are not included.
When you are half, but feeling the full weight of oppression,
You cannot help but want to be the full warrior they don’t see.
You see, as my ancestors colonized, brutalized, and raped my people,
What they didn’t realize is that they were creating the very being who would destroy them.
Because I carry the ruthlessness of my colonizing ancestors—
and the savagery of my indigenous ones.
I am a full American with rights,
With an education,
With an opinion,
With a goal,
With a voice that couldn’t be silenced.
I stand before you, half and half but fully committed to change,
fully committed to love,
and fully committed to breaking down everything meant to break me.
Because We the People, in order to form a more perfect union,
establish justice to ensure domestic tranquility.
Tranquility—a state of peace.
Peace that my mind has never known,
That my children were never shown;
A word that is thrown around without the embracement of its truth.
I may be only half, but I am here.