The wound festers on our back, oozing a stench that sickens parts of this body, but for me, the brown skin of this lesion I feel the pull and tearing of each move of this body. I, with my friend the nose, know the sweetly odor of our mix - the citrus blossoms and nixtamal - as a perfume that enhances our memories.
The memories are painful and joyful. As we continue to live and draw this body everyday with its wound. The eyes don’t want to see it, and the ears don’t want to hear about it. But the brain knows that it is there. Like me, the brown skin, it recognizes the pain.
The heart feels it too, with every beat the wound throbs and when not attended to it rips open some more and the blood and sweat mix, painfully reminding this body that it is present but…
our mouth is vulgar and crass and curses us for having our brown skin, for it being torn apart, as if we opened up of our own action.
Our mouth is worse than our ass; our ass knows when to shut up and doesn’t try to speak for the rest of us. ¡Sinvergüenza! It claims that if we turned away, the wound would heal. It forgets that this skin is who we are, of two from the start. Even though our mouth no longer wishes to voice what the tongue is designed to do, it enjoys the tomate and chile that our hands have picked. It
Our feet are still walking, weary by thousands of miles, feeling as if they will fall off, if they dare to cross the line they will be nailed to the cross that these shoulders bare. But this, us, the brown skin will continue to hold us together, to try to heal what is rent apart, and will continue to fester when ignored.
Pushed back against the wall our skin tears open again, we can take the suffering as we always have, but through it all our soul still bruises with every lash absorbed.
E. Fidel Ramirez is of and in the borderlands, which shapes his writing; his poetry interrogates life en la frontera and privilege in the academe - he is the Rascuache Academic. His untitled poem and the dissertation which explores it, Existing Con El Lobo, Traversing La Frontera Con Mis Nepantla Coyotes, y Buscando La Vida Del Zorro, won the NACCS Tejas Foco Dissertation of the Year Award for 2018.