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What’s Genocide?

their high school principal
told me I couldn’t teach
poetry with profanity
so I asked my students,
“Raise your hand if you’ve heard of the Holocaust.”
in unison, their arms rose up like poisonous gas
then straightened out like an SS infantry
“Okay. Please put your hands down.
Now raise your hand if you’ve heard of the Rwandan genocide.”
blank stares mixed with curious ignorance
a quivering hand out of the crowd
half-way raised, like a lone survivor
struggling to stand up in Kigali
“Luz, are you sure about that?”
“No.”
“That’s what I thought.”

“Carlos—what’s genocide?”

they won’t let you hear the truth at school
if that person says “fuck”
can’t even talk about “fuck”
even though a third of your senior class
is pregnant.

I can’t teach an 18-year-old girl in a public school
how to use a condom that will save her life
and that of the orphan she will be forced
to give to the foster care system—
“Carlos, how many 13-year-olds do you know that are HIV-positive?”

“Honestly, none. But I do visit a shelter every Monday and talk with
six 12-year-old girls with diagnosed AIDS.”
while 4th graders three blocks away give little boys blowjobs during recess
I met an 11-year-old gang member in the Bronx who carries
a semi-automatic weapon to study hall so he can make it home
and you want me to censor my language

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

your books leave out Emmett Till and Medgar Evers
call themselves “World History” and don’t mention
King Leopold or diamond mines
call themselves “Politics in the Modern World”
and don’t mention Apartheid

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

you wonder why children hide in adult bodies
lie under light-color-eyed contact lenses
learn to fetishize the size of their asses
and simultaneously hate their lips
my students thought Che Guevara was a rapper
from East Harlem
still think my Mumia t-shirt is of Bob Marley
how can literacy not include Phyllis Wheatley?
schools were built in the shadows of ghosts
filtered through incest and grinding teeth
molded under veils of extravagant ritual

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

“Roselyn, how old was she? Cuántos años tuvo tu madre cuando se murió?”

“My mother had 32 years when she died. Ella era bellísima.”

…what’s genocide?

they’ve moved from sterilizing “Boriqua” women
injecting indigenous sisters with Hepatitis B,
now they just kill mothers with silent poison
stain their loyalty and love into veins and suffocate them

…what’s genocide?

Ridwan’s father hung himself
in the box because he thought his son
was ashamed of him

…what’s genocide?

Maureen’s mother gave her
skin lightening cream
the day before she started the 6th grade

…what’s genocide?

she carves straight lines into her
beautiful brown thighs so she can remember
what it feels like to heal

…what’s genocide?
…what’s genocide?

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

“Luz, this…
this right here…
is genocide.”

"
“What’s Genocide?” by Carlos Andres Gomez  (via uoa)
1 week ago / 153,610 notes
dogfishtail notyouraveragehumanbeing
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cumfusable:

happy birthday baby beanie @jillianshook
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  1. The boy who takes your virginity is only going to love you long enough for you to stay in his bed.
  2. Your first job is never the best job. But you’ll meet some of your best friends there.
  3. Sometimes things don’t go the way you expect them to at all.
  4. People are usually never who they say they are.
  5. If you love someone, you need to tell them. Nobody is good at the guessing game.
  6. If your best friends don’t like the boy you’re involving yourself with, chances are he’s bad news.
  7. If a boy starts an invitation with, “Are you home alone”/”I’ll be home alone”, say no. You are a human being, not a toy to be played with.
  8. If some boy invites you to “the backseat of his truck”, he’s a piece of shit. Tell him to fuck himself.
  9. “Sorry” doesn’t always fix what you messed up.
  10. Stop wasting time wishing you could take back what you already did.
  11. You are at fault sometimes.
  12. There’s going to be a boy that you let get away. Yes, you loved him. It’s for the best, though.
  13. Toxic people hardly ever start off toxic.
  14. It’s always nice to make new friends, but never forget who your real friends are.
  15. Never lose the friends that would answer their phone at 3am if you called
  16. Never lose sight of who you are because of a boy.
"
• 16 Things I Learned While Being 16 (via dizzyhemmings)
2 weeks ago / 136,728 notes
dizzyhemmings malib-u
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November 19th, 2013,
‘Selfie’ was named the Word of the Year by the Oxford Dictionary
Pseudo-intellectuals everywhere cried about the ‘death of the English language’
Because God forbid modern colloquial speech be recognised as valid.
Time Magazine refers to ‘millenials’ as the ‘me me me generation’
Selfish, all we care about is personal gratification
Lazy, entitled, shallow narcissists.
A picture of a girl taking a selfie on her phone is used for the cover
Because our selfishness can be summed up in the fact that we like how we look enough to document it.
We are consumed, they tell us, with our self image.
Everything is about us.
Me-me-me.
With the addition of every word to the dictionary,
‘Hashtag’. ‘Perf’. ‘Sexting’. ‘Totes’. ‘Selfie’,
The ‘me-me-me’ generation continues to make it all about ourselves,
And we should, they tell us, weep,
We should weep because we are entitled,
Because all we care about are selfies and parties and Instagram,
Because this is the generation that will one day run the world,
And for that, we should weep,
Because all we are is ‘me-me-me’.
Let me tell you something.
Every year, university tuition will be 2.3% more expensive for MY GENERATION,
MY GENERATION reports the highest levels of anxiety and depression than ANY other generation,
15% more of US than YOU will go to university,
But 46% of MY GENERATION won’t find a job until over a year after law school,
MY GENERATION, on average, is $47,628 in debt.
58% of girls in MY GENERATION feels like they are the wrong weight,
95% of people with eating disorders are part of MY GENERATION,
And MY GENERATION has a million dollar industry telling us that we are not good enough,
That we are ugly, lazy, and entitled,
And anything we do to be financially successful,
Or less stressed,
Or beautiful, god dammit,
Is in vain.
So pick up your phone,
Pick your favourite filter,
And take a goddamn selfie.
You deserve it for having to grow up in these times."
• My poem, ‘Hashtag Selfie’. (via dingdongyouarewrong)
2 weeks ago / 124,310 notes
dingdongyouarewrong wheredidyougo-bernadette
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you know you’re so fucking afraid of people leaving you that you forget about the people you leave and how they feel. and I hope that fucking haunts you in the middle of the night and I hope you cant sleep without me on the phone and I hope my name burns on your tongue when you say it and I hope my face is engraved in your brain and I hope you realize that just because you get hurt doesn’t mean that gives you the monopoly to hurt other people that cared about you because god I fucking care about you and maybe that was my mistake"
• 11 PM thoughts (via cumfusable)
2 weeks ago / 2 notes

cumfusable:

I CANT GET YOU OUT OF MY FUCKING HEAD AND ITS KILLING ME AND MY EYES STING WITH FALSE HOPES AND MY BRAIN IS STRAINING FOR A MEMORY WITHOUT YOU BUT YOUVE FILLED UP EVERY CREVASSE WITH YOUR SOUL AND MY BODY CANT TAKE TWO PEOPLE LIVING INSIDE ITSELF

2 weeks ago / 1 note
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