Minerva Zayas ( Mexico)
Minerva Zayas is a Chicanx poet, activist, and scholar at Oregon State University in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She is currently working on her Master’s thesis with a major focus in student organizing, activism, and the negotiation of queer and Latinx identities. Minerva hopes to continue writing poetry as a way to reach multiple audiences outside of academia.
No soy Cualquiera.
I touch the hot kitchen
Me gusta jugar con
I like to play with fire
In blood, air, and force.
I turn the stove off.
I don’t need recognition,
I need comprehension
The stove burns quick
And I turn crisp with the others
hot, spicy & volatile.
Like fire when igniting a firework
It’s cold, wet and a crisp breath
After a night of rainfall.
It’s the spice
That burns your tongue
After each bite.
You get after a good laugh
With a friend.
It’s the view
Over the mountain
Sovereignty seeks my howl
The same way my mother yells
“A Donde chingados vas”
As I decide to depart miles /
I say fuck everyone as I walk along
El camino de la liberación
I take a long pause
I respire, expire, inspire
El pasillo está muy roto
The land of the wenatchi Natives are watching over me/
Or are they?
They are upset because European settlers decided to claim what is not theirs
Undressing the commonwealth of the Wenatchee River
That BLEED salmon in the 1800’s
And the Wenatchapan river that was maltreated
As a forceful violation
Que chingaderas son estas?
What a shame.
Viciously bamboozled my Mexican people into thinking that
Hoax land is the land of the “Free”
Banned land of the “American Dream”
One nation under God?
Pasteurized pussy grabbers
Where do I belong as a child of pioneer land Steelers?
My raza llora todas las noches
Because you fail to understand
Did you forget how you stripped the
Erotic out of the erotic?
Your lease is up
Patriarchal alliances are way overdue
You have made yourself too at “home”
Te quedaste con mi sexualidad
Y mi familia
You kept what’s most precious to me
Don’t ponder on it though;
I’m sure it doesn’t keep you up at night
Viviendo la vida de riquezas
Don’t be fooled;
I will boycott your portrait that’s sitting neatly on your dresser
Observations can be deceiving
The same way you share a jail cell with three woman
That can’t receive basic needs;
Or the same way that the old dude with Alzheimer’s
Is ambushed by the praxis of incarceration
The woman that owned the shadows
Is still haunted by the shadows
But you don’t understand
Your perceptions are WRONG
Qué es esto?
De quien soy?
Who do I permeate to?
Sere Lesbiana o una marimacha
Pero todavia preguntas;
Y el novio?
Ayyy el pinche novio
What about your boyfriend?
I recall Audre Lorde’s words
“Silence will not protect you”
Quit taking up space for the less “fortunate”
Remember the farmland
Somos más inteligentes de lo que piensas
Your indisposition is not my fault
When you live your whole life in fear
Don’t feel bad for us either,
Porque es la realidad de las vidas olvidadas