I’ve seen your pretty postcards,
Your fancy cheeses,
That world-renowned wine.
I’ve seen your pretty town squares,
Expensive resorts and your small-town living
Big house with a front and backyard,
Middle-class with a wife and kids.
I’ve seen your picture-perfect lifestyle.
But I’ve seen more.
Like a fruit:
Your sweet outer mantle hides your core,
A rough, coarse inner seed of poverty and pain;
The inner pit of misery.
I’ve lived the life you try and hide.
You’ve neglected us for far too long,
No love but there was never any to begin with.
I’ve seen your government projects,
Laced with once good people,
People now plagued by drugs and alcoholism.
I’ve seen your trailer parks,
Low education and literacy rates,
Sprinkled with intergenerational poverty.
I’ve seen your social segregation,
Your racist values.
I’ve seen the Mexican and Latino families
you exploit for cheap labor.
I’ve seen your discrimination,
I’ve experienced your neglect,
Lived your ugliness.
That wine is crafted from the hands of my Latino people,
You treat them as equals to the dirt of your orchards.
You are drunk with power…
Drunk with power.
Elias Gutierrez is a freshman at UCSF. He is an aspiring poet and artist, and a former Youth Spirit Artworks leader.