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Ileana Zea


Can you see the sunbursts behind me?
living in me, bursting through me,
unstoppable—like my mother
Raven hair: pitch as the night that flies
Ethnic beauty: paradise given to a la historia
and distributed among la raza
Experience imbedded skin: migrant woman,
hardworking—yet never broken
Beautiful mouth and speechless smile:
radiant sunbursts of la tierra
encompassed into glistening
time capsule droplets of sliva
Dark brown eyes, like the soil
piercing the silence
Slicing the time between Everything Under the Sun
versus the People of the Sun . . . and now
When I’d rather be a sunburst than a sunburn.
I want to be the time capsule of my past

I am of the people, by the people, for the people
I am of my mother,
who is of her mother—
who is of the sun
So when you look at me,
what do you see?
Chicana woman?
Raven princess?
Aztec Goddess?

Una Raza Unida
Mis hermanas, mis primas
me madre, mis tias
mis abuelas, y yo
Las reynas de la tierra del sol!

Y, ¿puedes ver los estallidos del sol detrás de me?
Creating the beating of my Heart
El corazón bombea me sangre contra me alma
And sunbursts erupt from my soul onto you, the world
And it is all centrifuged back in time
Into the soil of la tierra
mi tierra

Fertilizing the corn picked by Aztec women
who give birth to Aztec children
who become the migrant workers
picking sunburst fertilizad corn
with their children
who play at the dejes of the fields
the boundaries of containment
daydreaming of new beginnings
As the wind transforms raven hair swept faces
into Aztec warriors
Into my brothers
Into my sisters
Into me

Una Raze Nueva
Birthed from the convergente of
La Raza Unida y la tierra
Somos ayer, how, y mañana
Slicing the time between Everything Under the Sun
versus the People of the Sun
We are all sunburst children
shedding our sun Burneo skins
Time capsules renewing old vows
And we are all centrifuged back into the soil.