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The Family Stump This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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My family stump.
Names I'm supposed to remember but what I remember are eyes
watered-down blue/99%-pure-cacao chocolate
eyes staring into the past.
Stuck in dark memories, stories I'm supposed to remember
but what I remember is a

gooey fuchsia pink great-grandma kiss
oh-so-delighted to see you, my-how-much-you've grown
watered-down clouded-up blue eyes squint and guess wrong –
no, that's not my name, no, not that either.

How can she remember the price of a pencil skirt 50 years ago
but doesn't know my name?
I can't complain – I've forgotten hers.

On the other side of my family stump
people whose names I can't pronounce
they know me somehow, and marvel
this white skin, these Western clothes.
I don't understand a word they say
'cause I'm just a rich American feeling inferior here
but I'm greeted,
blessed and showered with love
I don't deserve.

So I melt away into the bark
stand quietly and don't look up
the odd one out, black sheep of the herd
the one with the hazel eyes.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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