La Isla Bonita

Your rhythm and curves of sea breeze never fail to leave my ears as the sounds of drums and cuartros play in the background. I have been blinded by the sounds of New York City car horns in the pathway to finding my Isla Bonita. The sand of my ancestors are not found in these city sidewalks. So I will not attend your version of Puerto Rican pride parades or wave my flag in this US land of forgotten identities. Isla Bonita, please do not call the United States your mainland. Please keep your flag waving high in the distance as the American language rips your tongue. Isla Bonita, with your waves of sea breeze delight, the rain in the El Yunque forest, and the sound of parandas during the Christmas time. Please let me see you Isla Bonita and all that’s been removed from your soul. Let me rid you of the Western mask placed upon your face to hide the veins that once flowed of Puerto Rican blood.The memories of farms men left behind to pursue the other red, white and blue,shoveling past El Barrio but no ocean here. Isla Bonita, I do not know of who you are but of what you appear to be. An emblem of US takeover, a mini vacation spot for the moment. But what I do know is that your spirit lingers strong in those who see you for what you are. Isla Bonita: from the tales of the Carribean elders to the sounds of the coqui frogs at night. The taste of pastelon, guava juice and tamarindo I pick off the trees on the road. La Isla Bonita, shine your light and always remember to be yourself. Be yourself for the countless of children who have been masked of the beauty you hold and forced to watch on the sidelines of American history. Isla Bonita shine bright for all to see your worth. Keep my Puerto Rican roots alive, please.

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