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    Spring backward. #photoaday #flowerstagram #firstdayofspring #spring #lastofwinter ❄️❤️ So yesterday, I ran a poetry workshop at a middle school and hearing the words from these youth, I feel a lot better about the world. One boy wrote a poem & was very shy about reading it. I offered to read it for him. To my surprise, he wrote about people wanting freedom and not being “illegal.” I hope he finds the courage some day to read the poem because these days, hate voices itself louder than love. Our kids deserve better role models. I didn’t grow up thinking about my immigration status, but I think many children have to now. 💔I’m at a very low point in my hope bank. I’m taking notes on how to say goodbye to a country. I think one way is love and one way is poetry.
#loveislouder #happyworldpoetryday This Sunday I made it to church at a Unitarian Universalist congregation. I arrived as a panelist for an immigration and human rights discussion. My audience was majority White. I started with a poem and then my college journey narrative. It is a heavy feeling to be a person who potentially faces deportation or undocumented status and to stand in front of an audience that though sympathetic, cannot imagine what your world is like. They listened to me and the other panelists very actively. One of the panelists, Klara Bilgin, showed us this poster-size cover of Time magazine’s March issue with her own addition “Why America?” At the end I was surprised that most people had comments rather than questions. When we say immigration is a controversial issue or a “hot topic,” it’s true. I got to see it today by people commenting on their experience traveling abroad without borders or their observations of how much labor is expected of undocumented immigrants. Many of them were proposing solutions. I wish Congress were as productive as these people were in their 15 or so minutes to comment and ask questions. #rageatCongress #votesmart #speakup Little sister poem. Be woke.❤️ #ajamonet #poem
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an undergraduate struggle

Rarely do I admit this, but most of my undergraduate courses don’t inspire energy. On the contrary, they rob me of energy. For 4 semesters (and one more to go), I have gone through requirement courses: general education or transfer suggestions.

In general, a community college student doesn’t have freewill when it comes to courses. Though I spend much of my time worrying about the future, two years ago, I didn’t anticipate landing at NOVA. I’m both blessed and distressed.

Distressed because I shouldn’t have been so picky when I took courses at Simon’s Rock. Blessed because I was selective enough; a lot of my credits transferred.

Yet, I took 3 courses my freshman year out of whim:

  • Psychology–whose little biology was too much for me and signaled one of my greatest weakness as an academic writer: flowery language. With two semesters of biology (the last this semester), I’m correcting this criminal offense with ease. But not enough. My English professor this semester threw in another offense: my use of metaphors. For the record: Disguising a poet sucks, thanks academia.
  • Art of autobiography–the one place where my papers sounding like Claudia was not a problem. A class with overwhelming space for discussion and growth. Probably the class that’s taught me most about being a woman of a color…. not surprising, an all-girls class. Oh, and among the few classes that didn’t transfer over.
  •  Dalcroze Eurhythmics Thesis Performance–this was not transferred over, accordingly to the 1 credit rule: they won’t transfer. I didn’t dive into knowledge with this “course.” It was a senior’s project. I did spend quality and weird time with a mixture of rhythmic and nonrhythmic people (me usually being the latter).

And eurthymics has (what seems) permanently embedded this song into my head:

While general eduction courses have brought me headaches and once, contributed to a shingles onset (yes, I’m talking to you math-class-that-never-transferred), I have learned a great deal. Here’s but a brief, incomplete summary:

  • Freshmen seminar taught me to tolerate over-imposing opinions and to accept that logic is as good as any method of persuasion (except for Claudia, she’s allowed all the emotion in the world).
  • My history courses have reinforced my belief that history is repetitive and we’re not going to move forward without knowing where everyone’s been. The Chicano during the 60’s. The Native American during colonization. The African during enslavement. The European during religious prosecution. The Chinese during the 1880s… All our brothers and sisters during genocides. Wars. Economic collapses. (And you get the gist, reader.)
  • My precalculus course, this semester, well, that’s a secret love affair. (I discovered math and I are alike in this: crazy logic.)

And all the curricula combined have filled me with appreciation for the privilege of education. Even with my limbo status, I’ve made it far. And Lord knows, it’s a tough, merciless world out there.

Courtesy of my English professor’s teaching:

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