On the one hand, I love my Chicano cousins. Their words about the border, la frontera, are strong and powerful and full of life and become movies in my mind.
But on the other hand, I look around and wonder- Where are my Caribeños? Mis hermanos y hermanas de la Republica Dominicana? Puerto Rico? Cuba? Mis Latinos, Sur Americanos? Donde se fueron? Why is the Chicano voice the only one speaking here today? In a city that is supposed to be the melting pot of the world?
Where is Junot? Julia? Why didn't they represent? Where was Laura? Isabel? Mario? Donde?? Are they indifferent to it all, or have they been silenced?
Their absence stirs my Gemini sensibilities: I feel invisible yet I stand out in this crowd of pochos. My texture of hair. My shade of brown skin. The way I say, "Oye pana!" I'm invisible yet I stand out.
But silent? Not silent. I will be silent no more.
I get La Raza. I appreciate and understand the struggle. But I LOVE mis islas, underrepresented as they are. But silent? No, not silent.
It's just about time for my next bold move... to fill the void with what it needs...
*smooches...ready to make my mark in this world for real*
Post Script: I wrote this while attending two seminars at the Association of Writers and Writing Programs conference this week in the City that was supposed to serve the Latino community, but frankly, only spoke to and about Chicano authors and readers. We're Latinos, too, dammit. We read. We write. And it's about time somebody recognized that shit!