Michelle Cortez

~ A Waterways Project

~ ~. Publication

I Michelle i Ri h d S' 1 c ar plege

Cortez Barbara Fisher

.~. . ~ codirectors

Thomas Perry

administrative assistant

Alison Koffler teacher

Public School Repertory Company Ellen Kirshbaum, principal

Stephen E. Phillips, Superintendent, Alternative High Schools & Programs

©1997 Ten Penny Players with funding support from

the NY State Council on the Arts

America, Land of the Free, My @$$

When I was born, I didn't know,

Who you were America,

I am an independent Dominican girl,

Who would rather not have been brought to this world.

America?

What is America to me? Land of the free?

I don't believe what America tells me,

teaches me,

or shows me,

I am an independent Dominican girl, And the ways of this world

make me want to hurt.

1 don't want America holding me down

While Pres. Dork sits in office wearing a crown Telling me to do this and do that

I am an independent Dominican girl

Who's only goal is to be some one in this world,

2

1 Teoria

, culortlor

p.8

2,RegU,"',a" dea, ur In d~gi§Jnul.

de interior

. . .;~. :r~

5 Cramoterapia p.110

6 Fo~osirea

a ccespri,Uar. colorate ' .p.,12b

Peretl albi versus

pereti colorati

4 ,CulotHe: semnificatie

, ?i"Sir:FIb0n~tica p.60

3

r-

. ~~Iorate

p.132

Until I'm 80. Please save my life, I trust in you, Believe me Lord,

Just tell me what to do.

I'll lead my life to worship, Just let me live on healthy, There's too much rape, drugs,

murder, disease.

Please don't let it be too late,

You have the power to put things straight. r really pray for this to happen

Cause I love you.

Please Lord, don't let it be.

r need your help Lord, can't you see. Yes, I've been bad, please forgive me,' I'm so scared of what is deadly.

r need to enlighten people of thee,

I need to accomplish things of many I need to grow and raise a family,

So one thing I ask is,

Please forgive me!

4

The World I See

In my neighborhood, I walk out sick,

And see nothing good.

Chicken heads squawking' People get messed up, Just for walking.

Who could live in such an environment, Where all is bad,

And nothing is decent.

Stray dogs,

Sad faces,

Hungry chewing logs.

Stray cats,

Meowing,

Hissing at the hissing of slashed tire flats.

The crazy lady,

Begging for spare change to smoke more crack, To get a little more dizzy like a daisy.

The weed man,

Selling smoke,

Lost dream as a child of being better than

5

We cannot live in a world so evil,

but there's nothing we can do but let go, just give.

The preacher stands

in the circle at the podium, preaching about what God commands

No one listens,

And it's a shame,

That's only because the violence glistens

Blood on the pavement

from last night's murder,

police lines blocking the decent

It's so sad,

but what can we do,

except live in a world so bad

Too bad for us

living here today,

when dying is a must

But r thank God's best

for giving us life, and also death, Thank you Lord cause in the end You give me rest.

6

This Love of Mine

I don't want to spend another day with tears, I can't live with all these fears,

I'm scared of losing my only true love, I'd rather die, flyaway like a dove.

Go away from the pain I am feeling inside, Run into a hole, like a mouse and hide,

Please don't make me suffer this pain any more, I can't live this way, please open the door,

Let me back in your heart,

So that we can start,

A new, my love,

A promise so true, I love you,

Please take me back.

7

Complex Situations

Early in the morning the day before morrow,

I walk through the grassy greens, dew drops glistening Petals of pink and yellow sway

on long, luscious stems

Like the legs of a beautiful woman with red colored lips

Tear tracks down her cheeks of a sorrow deep within herself, of a long lost future,

with no morality.

When I look into the belief of another I see ignorance and knowledge

I see damsels in distress

I see knights in shining armor

I see so many wondrous and horrible things none of which I believe in

Now going back to this woman of mine With her complex whines and complex groans

she thinks of a time when all she wanted was to divide

8

But now all she wants is a man with whom she can multiply

The hot wet spot she feels between her legs she remembers the tears while

she lays her hands on his head

he kisses her on her special place and she runs her fingers

through his matted hair

Now he looks up and smiles

while she pulls him up to be in her to penetrate her

he can make it all worth while he can make it all worth while when he looks up an' smiles

I 1

Today I walk the dew dropped grassy green as petals of pink and yellow

sway on long, luscious stems.

9

W'hat Do I Owe You

What do I owe you,

That you find it necessary to stare at me, You clowns

I don't like your eyes undressing my body and, following my curves,

the little of them I've got, Stop looking this way

Making me feel as small as a mouse, with a cat trying to stare me down, either just to scare me

or getting ready to pounce sneaking peeks through the crowd, invading my space

invading my mind

annoying eyes

silly face

stupid smile

disgusting taste

You know you really put me off with your silent sexual harassment stop looking at me,

I scream!

10

Stop glaring at my cheeks and hair, Making my face hot as my anger rises.

I hate men like you with you obscene gestures and remarks,

What do lowe you?

I think you owe me an apology!

The darkness that grips us, is that of a hole

we've dug it ourselves, 6 feet deep

awaiting our arrivals

are the worms and maggots to eat out our eyes and noses rip apart our souls

The holiness that grips us, that of the one

the holy most high

I t is that of our creator, who put us here,

in this spinning cemetery, with a shovel,

to dig our holes with

The silence that grips us is one of horror

fear of what's in the past terror of what's in the future or is it fright of

what's supposed to Jay

in that hole

fear of yourself

I would tell you more, but I must go back to my diggin' of my hole, cause there is a long way to go!

12

Go It Alone

Today I decided to go it alone Why?

I don't know.

But I could try to tell you so Here I go

I kinda figure I can

Live by myself Take care of myself

I don't need to be taken care of Smart and strong

Is what I am

I can be colors I can be free

13

Ventriloquist's Knee

Don't start talking I say to my knee, Cause if you haven't noticed look and see I have, to be the only one with a ventriloquist's knee

Blah Blah Blah Tee-hee Tee-heel

Shut up I say

And it does it at once Ventriloquist's knee on me.

Don't Try to Tell Me

As a woman I feel r have many great virtues I can do what I want to do,

be who I want to be,

I can go where I want to go, Talk to whomever I please. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not super woman

But I can try to be

That's only because I am free, I answer to no one

Just me

So many ways to get my way,

I've got the power to have my say I am a girl,

Female status

Makes me better

Than most of them! I know who I am, Do you know who you are?

Man?

Oh, please

Don't try to tell me

Who or what I'm supposed to be Cause I know,

15

And I am free

So what would a man be without me? Just a part!

Cause I got the prize

Don't get me wrong, again I say, cause men ain't all bad

Cause what would I be without a man? But not to guide me,

show me, or steal me of what I've got

But to help me

And I'll help him

Cause we all need help So just for that

I'll fill his cup to the brim with wine so sweet

cause females just can't be beat.

all of my poems are dedicated to the love ofmy life Steven Brooks Springle

I love you baby

I6

In Search of a Song Volume 269

~~~~i&'""""'Q,Y,rY~'~

7~

.

. ~

, I.. .. •.•.•.•••. ,_, '" ~"". , .. :'0'

~~~~ a waterways project publication

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