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  • Writer's pictureLeena J.

Fragments of a Silent Legacy



There is something about being here

as i am

in my asian american state

that is suffocating

as much as it is

liberating.


grateful, i should be

they are quick to remind me

to have what i have

from the labors of my parents

the immigrants

who left the home of their hearts

to salvage a greener garden

for their offspring


grateful, i should be

they are quick to remind me

to have what i have

a community of faith

that welcomes me in

without questions

but also

without much genuine interest


grateful, i should be

they are quick to remind me

to have what i have

an upper middle class life

marked by higher degrees in education

that demonstrate

the generosity of this country


don't i know how lucky i am

how fortunate

how blessed


yes, i do.


my knowing is what

keeps my voice asleep

all these years


in its sleep state

my voice is called

humble

peaceable

wise


its silence is lauded

hailed even

as an example

of maturity

and gratitude


but if this is what gratitude looks like

if this is how i must wear maturity

wisdom

peace

humility


what then, do i have left

to leave my daughter

that is truly of myself

what is left then

to pass on to the next generation

to the future culture makers

and world changers?


silent complicity

is no legacy

worth leaving

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