Origin Story

Artwork by Pascal Campion
somewhere on an island
in the middle of the Caribbean sea
you will find three graves
that tell the story of a broken family
torn and devastated by civil war
like the country they called home 

they were called “gusanos”
“worms” is what it means
the name for known rebels
persecuted by men in uniform
for not sharing their ideology

uprooted like a palm tree 
from the home and the farm
they had built over decades 
taken from them without pay
repurposed by their adversaries
for what they called 
“a worthy cause”

commanded to assimilate
or in chains face their fate
but they chose neither
instead managing to flee
only to able to take 
the clothes on their back 
and what their hands could carry

planting and replanting themselves
over and over again
until they finally found soil more free
fifty years have come and gone
now they live the American dream

that family is my family.

my life is a product of their strife. 
their experiences are a part of my heritage
their history is the beginning of my origin story

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