Do You See Now?



DO YOU SEE NOW?

by Empress Han

(aka Mila Konomos)

This isn’t the first time

But how many times

Over how many generations


Before you see

that this isn’t the first time


How many hundreds of years

How many millions of lives


Until you see—


Do you see—


Do you see now--


No such thing

as a model minority


Do you see now—

All the blood covering

Your American dream


Now do you see—


We’re tokens

and trophies


Until we’re targets & scapegoats

for the rage & the hate

of a nation


Where


Our Skin is not white enough

Our Skin is not brown enough

Our Pain doesn’t hurt enough


For anyone to care enough


So we hide

Lay low

Lay down


Erase ourselves

Until we’re


invisible

Shadows

of pleasure

and

Bodies

of commodity


Under the pressure


To be

Everything for everyone


Swallow dignity

No room for self-pity


We eat silence

and secrets


Absorb violence

and tragedy


Centuries

Of wars and

thieves,

Laws

And policies


sanctioning

atrocities


to rid the earth

of yellow peril

and perpetual foreigners


except when we’re building your railroads

or farming your sugar cane

comforting your soldiers

birthing babies for your white mothers

pawns serving in your empires


You think I’m here because I wanted to be

I’m here because no one wanted me


But only to fulfill their dreams

Build their dreams

Scream their dreams


In my bed at night


My daughter at my side

Hold her close

Hold her tight


Pray & whisper

I’m raising her right


So she can see—


No such thing

As a model minority


So she can see—


No such thing

As an American dream


I rise

I weep

I fight

Hoping


She won’t ever have to see


Her own blood

covering


Your American dream.



Empress Han (aka Mila Konomos)

KAD, Poet, Artist, Activist.


Mila, a community member of The Faith Studio, has submitted this work in response to my desire to provide context to the recent and historical attacks on America's Asian population. This is her perspective. My hope is that as we pray for our Asian family we develop a compassion for a people beyond the AAPI (Asian American Pacfic Islander) label. That we see them in their humanity with struggle no unlike our own.

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