2017 Me by Jessica Gleason I am no more than the sum of my parts labeled female though non-binary in real life not just on TV bi- racial preferring to be a Mediterranean pacific islander location not-withstanding My genetics bridge continents and unfurl on either side of Caucasia— White America spectrum-skinned Italians with short cherub frames and Hawaiians, done medium-well, tall and sturdy meeting in the middle to form imperfect me. Judged on my face my waist— the curves that are simply a part of my anatomy But, I live on the fringe, marginalized with the other minorities and ostracized by them as well, Often mistreated by an outdated regime the misogynistic majority. Just white-looking enough to pass sometimes unseen Privilege, they call it given by a less discerning eye one that says “You, You’re Anglo. One of us. For now. Until you’re not.” And, that toe, dipped in Midas-water is fallible They sometimes see me, my parts eyes not round enough, face, flatter than most; nose-wider-but not in a Ukrainian way. In the right light, not pink enough. The short list of characteristics that make me, not good enough— chastised illegal, stupid, poor, bad driver all based on misplaced ethnicity—ethnocentrism And, all of a sudden I’m angry for someone else—someone besides me. That privilege, ripped back away placed in a box for some Saxon to open another day. They make you feel shame for the things that set you apart-- Shame for being a part of someone else’s history. My ancestors were strong— But, I think it’s my own struggles that define me. Still, I know there’s a warrior in me, someone who will fight for her people, stand up against even the most powerful entity— do what’s just and fair and moral Regardless of how futile it seems to be.