By Ben Allen
Privilege and the Wall
After a long day at school, after dropping the ball on a Chicano Lit essay,
I watched the Frampton-Santa Cruz weigh in, watched those tiny men threateningly flex their muscles,
and I decided to go for a run.
I ran down Utah, past the boxing gym that was under construction and being repainted from white
to something less gaudy, and I watched the fighters skipping rope through the window in the wall,
before I continued on my end of day run, my privilege.
allows me to “drop the ball” on my essay, it allows me the chance to even write my essay
about the struggle at the border of this country, its wall
where the leaders flex their muscles
where the leaders are white
and where they tell men and women with brown faces to run.
I’ve had a pretty easy run,
because of my privilege.
Because I am white,
the struggle at the wall is an academic one, condensable to a three paged double spaced MLA format essay,
and at the end of the day, I may exercise my muscles
and not think twice about the wall.
However, now there is no academic wall.
Now the wall is very real because we have allowed tyrants to run
this land, which was never theirs to being with, only taken with their muscles,
from those with no privilege
whose oppression is part of a collective essay
that has been erased from The History of Man (White).
But look into the eyes of Man (White).
Beneath his own personally constructed wall
lies his fear of a brown ese
telling him to run,
of the oppressed exercising their own privilege,
that is intrinsic from working this land with their muscles.
And their muscles are strong muscles,
brown, not white,
holding both power and privilege
enough to destroy any pinche wall
and return them to the communities that had been run
before there was ever a struggle on which to write an essay.
And afterwards, there will be no more History of Man (White),
but a History of Humanity, which will run
long after the breaking down of the last wall.