Vivo entre dos mundos
I speak in tongues
Spanglish slang
Pocha parlance
Eloquent sCHOLAr level English
I enunciate each syllable
roll my R’s
mi lengua purring against the roof of my mouth
right behind my teeth
revving the rage of my ancestors
demanding reparations and a platform
restaurando mi identidad.
Tamaolipeca y Tejana con raices chilangas.
The borderlands has redefined my idea of home and identity.
I used to think home is where your family is
But I quickly learned that family is not always limited to or defined by blood ties
Just like home isn’t limited to or defined by geographical locations.
Busco mis ancestros
my indigenous ties, those which have been erased and purposefully labeled as a hispanic.
We were the brown bodies paving the path for their manifest destiny
With our blood and sweat we picked the crops that fed their fortune.
They gave us crumbs in return and a poor standard of living.
They gave us non potable water.
brown grass
they gave us drugs
forced sterilization.
Pero still we thrived.
Now in the modern days, in our classrooms
they continue to misconstrue our stories.
Dictating what is and isn’t Chicano/Latino theory
Still not giving us a place
when this has been our home for centuries
when we are the ones who reside in this inescapable reality
still they try and tell us we do not belong.
They tear our families apart
slash the funding for the programs helping us survive.
The remnants of proof of our history have been dispersed into colonias not deemed worth of proper lighting, roads, sewage, protection.
But while going on the path of conocimiento
we have begun to put together Coyolxauhqui.
We have begun to thrive as Nepantleras.
Karla Camila Gutierrez was born in Matamoros, Tamaulipas and was raised both here in the valley and Mexico. As a first generation immigrant, life in the borderlands is a concept that has motivated her to pursue a degree in English and Cultural Studies. As a member of WAKE-UP topics she writes about are LGBTQ, reproductive rights, the marginalization of POC, sexual liberation, machismo, mental illness, among other things. When she’s not hustling at work or school, she loves to take naps, read, indulge in delicious food of all kinds, and binge watch films and series. Camila hopes to get into a job that allows her to write such as a job in the journalism field and she’s also would like to work as a union organizer. She hopes that the growing awareness of social issues will have a positive impact in the valley and that she will be able to give back to the community.
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