I Am Brown in Small-town America


© 2018 by Leila Martinez

My name precedes me everywhere I go and

I am assumed

and categorized

before I walk through the door.

I am brown skin, blue black hair and dark brown eyes.

I am suspicion.

This is what it means to be brown

in small-town America.

I am spoken to slowly.

I am a study of constructs.

I am wide eyed,

Slant eyes

“Mexican-passing” in sea of yellows, whites and blacks.

This is what it means to be brown

in small-town America.

I am background noise,

my culture’s voices diming silent and quickly.

I am assimilation.

I am generalization and catalogued,

A label,

an “other.”

I am brown in small-town America

To keep up with Leila, follow here on Facebook here and go to her website at www.leilatualla.com.

#poetry #browninamerica #equality #racism #prejudice

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