Raised in this floating world, forever deep. You can’t drain the ocean
Decidedly from down south of here You can’t un-trace the roots.
You can’t lie and say, “This isn’t where I grew up” You can’t deny the fruits of what was planted two generations ago when your grandpatents arrived from the Philippines, seeds in tow soil for the taking You can’t confiscate what they claimed when they planted their flags into the moon-white sand of a beach in Florida on a far side of the planet their forefarthers have never seen
You can’t say those flags weren’t there when wind came You can't ***** out that pride of country, cut off its native tongue and its acquired taste, or pass up the plate of fried lumpia and rice passed down from the kitchen of your Daddylol feeding seven kids day in and out with tomatoes he planted, chickens he raised, Malonggay leaves he grew with thumbs so green they wrote in the papers about it He was a farmer Your grandmother, a nurse And i was writer And this is our story
You can’t erase the letters of your name, your lineage written all over it like a map of everywhere we been You can’t take back the words in Tagalog and Chavacano your Lola Shirley must have sang your mother to sleep with You can’t take their dreams
You can't just wake up one day and undo the ripple effects their moves created across waters 10,000 miles east of here, the rolling waves they curled into or the faraway shores they washed up upon Bottled messages in hand Our legends held within You can’t say centuries from now that they won’t feel it when their feet hit the sand of their own frontier beside the waves we stayed making a history written in deep water for those who come after you to sail above and beyond.