By Diane Elayne Dees
America is Mexico, Columbia, Brazil,
Argentina, Canada. It is Paraguay,
El Salvador, Guatemala, Uruguay, Venezuela,
and Chile. America is Ecuador, Nicaragua,
Bolivia, and Honduras. It requires a lot of nerve
to take the name of two huge continents
and make it your own. We are the man
who stands against the bar, sprawling
his arms and legs so wide that no one can sit.
We are the woman who takes up three seats
with her body, her purse, her computer,
and her yoga mat. We are the truck
that occupies two parking spaces,
the teenager who sits in the middle of the floor
and makes everyone step around him.
We are a lot of things, both good and bad.
But we are not America.
Diane Elayne Dees’ poetry has been published in many journals and anthologies. Diane, who lives in Covington, Louisiana, also publishes Women Who Serve, a blog that delivers news and commentary on women’s professional tennis throughout the world. Her chapbook, I Can’t Recall Exactly When I Died, is forthcoming form Clare Songbirds Publishing House. Also forthcoming, from Kelsay Books, is Diane’s chapbook, Coronary Truth. Her author blog is Diane Elayne Dees.