On Being Other ...
When I was just 2 my mother
moved on in life looking for a love that might make her feel complete.
She married a man with alabaster skin and eyes of ice blue ...
Since that time I have been asked
"What ARE you?"

As a child, I didn't really know what to make of the question,
didn't really REALIZE what it meant to be "other"
didn't fully digest
that what people meant 
you don't LOOK like you belong here.

Whose child are you?

As a grown woman, I understand now that the query
is LESS about curiosity
and MORE about the INCLUSION someone wants to offer me.
People want to assess
by box I will check
whether they will offer me access and respect
based on  the definition of my "OTHER".

"What ARE you?"
What are YOU asking me?
"I mean, like ... what ETHNICITY are you?" 
Italian & Japanese.
"So ... asian & white." 

... right.

Don't say to me "ethnicity" when you really mean Color.
Don't feign curiosity when your motive is membership.
Don't try to excuse my presence with "She's not THAT, she's THIS" ...
when you COULD just say

I have access ... cuz I am a fucking BAD ASS,
that's why.

If you and yours need excuses
for my inclusion ...
that's not something I have anything to do with.
That's a YOU thing.

And this aint no new thing, believe me
My ethnicity is NOT my color
my color is not my culture
my heritage is an inheritance whose definition

and there is no country for us.
We will forever be too much ...
and always
not enough

to belong.