Language Barrier by Eve Lyons

Language Barrier

In sixth grade I learned my first Spanish

“Chinga,” I told my friends

not knowing the full potential behind the word

are words my savior or a weapon?

 

“Chinga,” I told my friends

his parents found his books

are words my savior or a weapon?

her parents read her journal

 

his parents found his books

distressed by the subjects they chose to fuck

her parents read her journal

no comprendo

 

distressed by the subjects they chose to fuck

la niña aprende para amar

no comprendo

el niño aprende para querer

 

la niña aprende para amar

don’t expect her to stay within your lines

el niño aprende para querer

he doesn’t like your rules

 

don’t expect her to stay within your lines

your language has a hundred ways to hate

he doesn’t like your rules

your language has a hundred ways to hate

 

your language has a hundred ways to hate

crumpled words, wet paper on the floor of my car

your language has a hundred ways to hate

teach us how to love

 

crumpled words wet paper on the floor of my car

not knowing the full potential

teach us how to love.

 

Eve Lyons is a poet and fiction writer living in the Boston area.  Her work has been published in Lilith, Word Riot, New Vilna Review, Mutha magazine, Hip Mama, and many other literary venues and several anthologies.

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