“Homeland,” by Daniel Flores
March 5, 2019
My family is from Nicaragua.
Where the lush grass is green, and the exotic trees are like something from a Dr. Seuss book.
The most interesting person in my family to me is my grandma, her accent is firm, sturdy.
She holds her accent like a battle-axe ready at any time to go off on someone or like a bull going heads up with a rhino, holding Spanish as her main tongue, as though she holds her accent just to have a piece of her homeland always with her.
Where my family comes from there is a lot of friendly people, A humble people who all looked out for each other but their land was suffering from war, a civil war instigated by the united states. Gunshots outside their houses almost every day the soldiers were looking for my grandpa, he was considered a deserter and a traitor, of course that’s what they title you when they wanted you dead, and they wanted to train my uncles at a young age to be elite soldiers.
They used to go to my grandmas and my mom, and uncles when they were younger.
They used to come with gunshots, death threats. I ask myself often, “How does someone come from a place like that and still be this sweet?” They fled and came to America.
Nothing could ever hold down my grandma.
She has a smile sweet as summer with a fresh warm vibe. She has too many beautiful stones in her mouth to be knocked out, to ever shut her mouth to keep silent for anybody, no klan, pig, piece of garbage can oppress her.
Daniel Flores wrote this poem while a 9th Grader at Nathan Hale High School, with WITS writer Danny Sherrard. Performed at Seattle Arts & Lectures’ Journalism Series event with Dean Baquet & Jim Rainey at Benaroya Hall on March 5, 2019.