“Revenge” by Elisa Chavez, in The Seattle Review of Books
Since you mention it, I think I will start that race war.
I couldíve swung either way? But now Iím definitely spending
the next 4 years converting your daughters to lesbianism;
Iím gonna eat all your guns. Swallow them lock stock and barrel
and spit bullet casings onto the dinner table;
Iíll give birth to an army of mixed-race babies.
With fathers from every continent and genders to outnumber the stars,
my legion of multiracial babies will be intersectional as fuck
and your swastikas will not be enough to save you,
because real talk, you didnít stop the future from coming.
You just delayed our coronation.
We have the same deviant haircuts we had yesterday;
we are still getting gay-married like nobodyís business
because itís still nobodyís business;
thereís a Muslim kid in Kansas who has already written the schematic
for the robot that will steal your job in manufacturing,
and that robot? Will also be gay, so get used to it:
we didnít manifest the mountain by speaking its name,
the buildings here are not on your side just because
you make them spray-painted accomplices.
These walls do not have genders and they all think you suck.
Even the earth found common cause with us
the way you trample us both,
oh yeah: there will be signs, and rainbow-colored drum circles,
and folks arguing ideology until even I want to punch them
but I wonít, because theyíre my family,
in that blood-of-the-covenant sense.
If youíve never loved someone like that
you cannot outwaltz us, we have all the good dancers anyway.
Iíll confess I donít know if Iím alive right now;
I havenít heard my heart beat in days,
I keep holding my breath for the moment the plane goes down
and I have to save enough oxygen to get my friends through.
But I finally found the argument against suicide and itís us.
Weíre the effigies that haunt Americaís nights harder
the longer they spend burning us,
we are scaring the shit out of people by spreading,
by refusing to die: what are we but a fire?
We know everything we do is so the kids after us
will be able to follow something towards safety;
what can I call us but lighthouse,
of course Iím terrified. Of course Iím a shroud.
And of course itís not fair but rest assured,
anxious America, you brought your fists to a glitter fight.
This is a taco truck rally and all you have is cole slaw.
You cannot deport our minds; we wonít
hold funerals for our potential. We have always been
what makes America great.