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I am an anthology of all the Dominican women they warned you about, get on your knees and thank them.

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they don't tell you that about borders,
how they break you in half until you're never enough for either side.

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how can I ever call another place home when my homeland is a fire I'd gladly burn myself into.

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I asked mami who she would be had she the money, time, and education. had she not had me.

a therapist, she says, I am always helping people.

and it's hard imagining mami as a therapist. taking notes in a classroom. hopping on the train towards prebysterian hospital, or her own office, instead of upstate for cleaning jobs, dyckman or the heights to bartend and waitress, or local salons to sell knock-off purses. it's hard imagining mami talking fluent english, owning a house, with a husband, and without me.

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I seek asylum in these lines like my heart is a casualty of war

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may the bachata songs we never danced to receive the ovation they deserve
especially from lovers who know better than we did

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a latinx immigrant podcast
called loose accents

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danyeli rodriguez del orbe is a spoken word artist, writing workshop facilitator, keynote speaker, and podcast co-host. for bookings please email or submit contact and event information.

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