Sunday, September 18, 2005

Fancy Book
By Samaris Ayala

Fancy Book
My first love did not destroy me
As a pupil I was a princess
For you see my parents were prolitariats
In the old world, a few opportunities
I adored my teachers
They taught me well
Yet they could not prepare me
My first love did not destroy me
In my libraries there was no
accomodation for Puerto Rican literature
I read classics and my scriptures
Life was simple
My first love did not destroy me
At the fancy school
They handed me a book
I was first in my family
To go to a fancy school
None before me
I became absorbed and I began to wander
These anthologies were foreign to me
My first love did not destroy me
I was raised as a strict Catholic
My siblings and I worked while
going to school
Yes we were poor
But Unlike, Down These Mean Streets
We did not argue over color
My family was color blind
The world of Piri Thomas was
He dictated and I became frightened
Impressionable as a a child
Not until later did I comprehend
That my barrio was not ghetto
We were a communtity
We were barrio, not ghetto
Why was there so much confusion
When Piri Introduced himself
As a voice of history

New York City-based Samaris Ayala contributes her poetry to the Puerto Rico Sun. She may be reached at
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