[Poetry Friday] “Because THIS is a Revolution!” – Slam Poetry from the Immigrant Youth Justice League

poetry friday

Fats here.

This week, I would like to share a painful truth being addressed in this slam poem written by a young man named Jorge. I stumbled across this poem from the Immigrant Youth Justice League.

Penny is hosting the Poetry Friday round-up this week at A Penny and Her Jots!


“Because THIS is a Revolution!”

I didn’t have to run across the border to know that as much as I love her,
America does not love me back.
And as much as I want to succeed, she won’t let me.

My mother brought me here when she was 27
My sister was 3, and I was 8.

She figured an American education for her children would fit well with her job
cleaning offices afterhours and my father’s machismo.

She is now 43.


My mother moved to the U.S. because she figured an American diploma would fit
well with her dry-cleaning job and a sense of loneliness.

Yet, “illegals” or alien are names pressed upon us.

Last time I checked, “illegal” is not a noun describing a person.
And last time I checked,
My tax dollars are just as valuable as yours.

I can’t exempt myself from not paying taxes whenever I buy something.

I had to learn where acentos van just like you did.
Spanglish is my culture.
Chilaquiles and apple pie is my meal.

Go back? What do you mean go back?
My ancestors have worked hard at building this country.
And NAFTA is not just a document, it is a reality.

High school kids should not be weeping because college dreams are crushed.
When 65,000 DREAMs are denied a year, there is something wrong.

One of my journal entries begins with, “I cried last night. And I try to be strong for
my family but I couldn’t.”

Breakdowns break me down.

My friend who’s been here since he was one deserves his DREAM.
Mi amiga que quiere estudiar se lo merece.
I know you feel like giving up, but I won’t let you.
Our feeling of wanting to travel becomes a push.
Pumping our fist.
Because we live in America.

Because THIS is a revolution!

When 65,000 DREAMs are denied a year, there is something wrong.

Because being undocumented feels like your young forever.
And there is no list for me to sign my name at the bottom. So that I can grow up.

I speak English just as well as you do and I understand that you’re afraid of change.

But I am not leaving.


4 comments on “[Poetry Friday] “Because THIS is a Revolution!” – Slam Poetry from the Immigrant Youth Justice League

  1. Yay! Jorge did a great job on that poem! Why are some recent immigrants called American (like Trump and his wife and kids) but others suspicious because of skin color or religion? He is a giant hypocrite, but we don’t have to believe his lies. I don’t. I love Chilaquiles, and I make it often. Apple crisp is my go-to dessert. I make cabbage rolls, kibbe, stir fry, teriyaki, and all kinds of other foods. I’m American, and I embrace it all. So should Trump, if he weren’t such a bigot. He can’t make us hate each other, though.


  2. Jorge speaks/writes a powerful poem. He is absolutely right when 65,000 dreams a year are denied, there is something wrong.


  3. How heartbreaking. When my grandparents brought their young family to a new country they all changed their names, stopped speaking their own language, sacrificed their culture, denied their past, all just to fit in to their new “home”. 40+ years later, and what’s change? Heartbreaking.


  4. maryleehahn

    So much power in his voice!


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