1. Accept everything just the way it is.

Poetry

(from Dokkodo, Volume 1; The Way of Walking Alone)

He said he wanted revolution.
Went to school for it and everything.

Took Chicano Studies 101, 102, 125,
the course on México’s history.

He said revolution.

Spent hours discussing local politics
with Albert, whom he considered a coco
cuz the “o” at the end of his name became

silent.

He wanted revolution.
Tutored at-risk kids who
wound up pregnant anyway
going to Valley High School and graduating
a trimester early.

He said revolution, writing
poetry about jaguars, “Joaquin”
and how he’s unique.
A regular “social” man seeking “social justice.”

Wanted revolution, scaring
white girls and attracting white
girls with guilt
identity crises
the luxury of being Italian
at a drop of a line.

He said revolution.

Eventually got tired of
tortillas and abuelitas
bullshit sage burning ceremonies
and cliched lines about spirits and el chupacabra.

Revolution.

Because Dolores Huerta and Frida Khalo
are the only symbols of Chicana feminism,
and all Chicano men should be Cesar Chavez
or Che.
Non-violent and threatening.

Symbol of virility and change.

But he said
he wanted
revolution.

A chance to be that
Donkey-Kong-and-Zelda-playing
Batman: Animated Series-watching
Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nothin’ To Fuck Wit’
Murs 3:16-loving
wannabe-rapper’s-delight-living
person.

He said revolution,
but the more he sought it

the more things stayed the same.

Ethnic “cleansing” of neighborhoods.
No longer able to live
next to the park, ironic mustaches
taking over.

Return of the
Conquistador.

Brown kids diagnosed quickly with ADHD,
suspended from preschool and parents
yet to learn the effects of Hot Cheetos
and Arizona Iced Tea on developing psyches.

A foreclosed home means nothing
more than opportunity for
the lesbian realtor to attract
gay money to the ‘hood
and el paletero can’t ring his bell
after 3pm no more.

He said revolution
and learned that inland is his
place. Not the beach
he grew up next to.

It became private property.

And private trumps public.

But he said
revolution.
And just couldn’t revolution anything.

This poem is part of my last poetry and photography chapbook, “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze.

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