& I’m not sure how important that is
When you’re from Ukraine. I don’t give a fuck
What Elizabeth Bishop said. Never
Did. You can like her I’m just saying I
Don’t care what she had to say about race.
I will not center some racist settler
Woman’s mistaken ideas about
The world in order to make love & hate
Less complicated. Why destroying what
Destroys you is more difficult than you
Expect every time: that complication.
Which is to say I’m not sorry: Clarice
Lispector was white, that passage sounded
Anti-black & that’s not “fucked up” to say.
When I said race is relational what
I meant is people are racialized in
Relation to other people who have
Power. It isn’t enough to not like
Mexicans. Where I’m from, many of us
The Mexicans who came from South Texas
To shop for designer clothes. They were rude
& treated at least the working class &
Poor & undocumented Mexican-
Americans as bad as the “Anglos,”
Which is what we called the white people, who
May or may not have hated Mexicans
Who worked with a few of them anyway.
I took dance classes with two Mexican
Girls. They went to private school in Brownsville.
I remember thinking one of them was
Very pretty. I remember seeing
Them shopping in the mall once & my mom
Pointing out how they were shopping alone
With their parents’ credit card & she watched
With what seemed like awe as the pretty one
Paid for an expensive GUESS jean jacket
& complimented her taste. My cousins––
Some of them––were Mexican too. I thought
I was whatever they were. Those teenage
Girls shopping with their parents’ credit card
Were definitely from Mexico though.