followed her parents to a whole new world
and left behind doting grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins
grew up too quickly.
Problems about school:
One, English and ESOL,
because her parents couldn’t teach her what they didn’t know.
Two, being the only person of color in sight,
because she wasn’t home anymore.
Three, culture shock,
because she now lived in the Land of Opportunities.
Only one year after landing to this mysterious place,
she had her pregnant mother to consider
and her new little sister to raise.
And she hated this new little sister,
but she was far too considerate of her working, struggling parents,
So she wrote, on scraps of paper, about
how she hated the fat hippopotamus
for needing so much attention
for stealing so much attention.
Four years after that,
she finally adjusted to America
but now she had, again,
her pregnant mother to consider,
her little sister to raise
plus another little sister to raise,
plus the raging hormones of adolescence.
She started working at 14
because her father’s gambling lost the family more money than they ever had.
Then she started high school.
She was pretty and popular,
and she liked to date
but she had two working parents to consider
and two little sisters to raise.
So any interested teenager,
when dating her, got
a three-for-one deal.
after she got married
after she had two beautiful children of her own to raise
her father was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer
and less than a year after his remission
he suffered a stroke
became the breadwinner for two families.
Her father out of work,
mother out of work to care for her father,
sisters still in school,
children not yet attending school,
every single one of them,
she looks after.
She, just one person,
and the responsibilities
of several worlds.