Image by takasuii on flickr.com.
“So, here you are
too foreign for home
too foreign for here.
Never enough for both.”
– Ijeoma Umebinyuo
Lunch for one at a french cafe:
homework pages dotted with coffee marks,
a cold crepe on your plate.
croissant crumbs fall on your new pants, you brush them off
squeezed fist through tiny bouts of rage
Try to accept them
even if they’ll never love you or see you as one of them
even though the one you left behind isn’t here
even though you sit alone in front of an empty room at night
and the white girls of your country only look at you with disdain.
“Respect the places you occupy,
don’t be like the ones that don’t know better.”
Foolish, don’t you know there’s no finish line in the game of assimilation
when your face is not the same?
you’re thinking of
“Chine ou Japon?” despite the 818 drawl,
cobblestone streets and callused toes in european shoes you bought to fit in,
the times you dreamt of parties, instead of cans of beer finished alone,
those text messages you reread when your inbox is empty
the je ne sais quoi you miss like fatigue
just wishing you could walk down those roads and boutiques uninterrupted,
but instead, you fumble out euros and rest the spoon inside the cup,
frantic but exhausted, again on your way.