singing the mixed girl blues

he thinks my friend and i are blood
(she is near 6 feet tall. i am 4’9.)
i laugh politely
(she has blonde hair. my hair is red lacquer brown.)
hiding my disappointment
(she is white. do i look white?)

sometimes i can see how people could think we’re related
the only time my tongue is accentuated with ah-cham! and aihigoos is when in despair
my pale red-cheeked skin is only olive during the summer time
my thoughts are articulated through southern y’alls, random oh mys, and valley girl “totally like y’know, right?…!”
disappointed i leave the coffee shop
wondering if i should be wearing shit with dragons and cherry blossoms on it
throwing kung-fu kicks around
maybe being his asian american stereotype is better than this.

whenever i feel alone— like now, when people mistake me for white—
i bring my hands to my face
you are there, hidden in the crevices of my palms
whispering “remember me even when it is easy to forget”
yes. especially when it is easiest to forget.
i think about what struggle my ancestors have been through so i can sit here
and do silly things
like lament identity and perceived whiteness

whenever i am ashamed of my broken korean or misspelled hangul
i run my fingers through my hair,
hearing the plucking of gayageums and the sweep of hanboks brushing against the floor
the harmony of fans, drums, and people remind me that we share more than consonants and vowels
i smile, thankful for this heritage

whenever i feel lost in anti-racist work, wondering where my people fit into this black-white dichotomy that does not allow room for families being torn apart by ice raids,
leaves out colonization so we can focus on “issues at home”
and saves stolen land as a topic for later discussion
(while simultaneously wondering where all the non-black people of color are gonna represent)
i want to scream!
instead i think of my sisters and the amazing support system we’ve built for each other
not coalition building, no
but community building and community weaving
inspired by their work and love i keep on

i remember
i myself
am a mixed girl
who is loved
by other mixed girls
by negotiators of this body
lovers of this skin
other occupiers of fuzzy, seemingly conflicting
identities and space
i am loved
and this is enough.

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8 Comments

Filed under API-A, i love my people, identity, woc, writing/poetry

8 responses to “singing the mixed girl blues

  1. Beyond beautiful:-) Just like you! Miss you.

  2. Keep throwing them kung-fu kicks of knowledge around!

    whenever i feel lost in anti-racist work, wondering where my people fit into this black-white dichotomy

    Have you ever read Yellow
    Race in America Beyond Black and White
    by Frank Wu; very good book on that very subject.

  3. Aaminah Hernandez

    Oh, you KNOW I feel ya! So glad to have friends like you that we can talk honestly about this stuff.

  4. this is awesome. reminds me of several experiences of my mixed race friends so much.

    and you are loved by lots of people who aren’t mixed or girls too (just thought i had to say that) 🙂

  5. So painful and beautiful…from one mixed sistah to another, I soooo feel ya!!!

  6. thanks for the love, yall! shiva the last few lines were totally a shout out to you and other non mixed non girl people i hold close : )

    jack, i’ve had Yellow on my shelf for 2 months now and you mentioning it tells me now is a good time to read it. (loved the last podcast, btw!)

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