I have a voice. I have a story.

Génesis Miranda Longo

Aerie sat down to talk to Génesis about a powerful poem she wrote in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month and Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Plus, we got to hear from her how she would style her Aerie to write more poems, and what she’d wear to read those poems to the world! Read on for the whole interview & her poem, plus watch the video below for an exclusive reading of “Sí se puede.”

Watch the Video!

Real Talk! An Interview with Génesis Miranda Longo

Q: How do you wear your Aerie to get in the writing mood? What would you wear to hit the
coffee shop or do a poetry reading?

A: My favorite outfit for coffee shops or poetry readings is for sure my crossover flare leggings with a lace bralette and a soft cardigan or top (like the jean or any day fave shirts).

I hope my story encourages others, and for those that relate to anything in this poem, I hope my story plays a part in yours.

Q: How is this poem an example of how you use your #AerieREAL Voice?

A: It shares who I am, where I come from, and gives perspective to where my life is today. When I share my life story, people often look at me and say, “WOW, I had NO IDEA!” Many have told me that when they see me in the present-day, on social media, or at work. It can be easy to think my life is perfect, that I’m privileged, and that therefore, they cannot relate to me. It’s easy to see the “final product,” but by sharing my #AerieREAL story, I can show the world that it’s been a long journey. One of hardships and challenges. One of sacrifices. But one that has been worth the fight. I hope my story encourages others, and for those that relate to anything in this poem, I hope my story plays a part in yours.

When I feel down, I put on my mariachi music and sing to the top of my lungs. I play the cumbias and rancheras of my country and dance my heart away. I let out a big Mexican grito and remember who I am, and where I come from.

Q: Can you tell us about how you became a writer?

A: I started writing because I felt like I had no one to talk to. When I moved to the United States from Mexico, my mother’s tongue became a barrier between my classmates and I. I didn’t feel heard or understood. I felt out of place: too Mexican for America, too American for Mexico. Ni de aqui ni de alla (Neither from here nor from there). So I wrote. And today, I write. I have a voice. I have I have a story.

Mi nombre es Génesis Arlette Miranda Longo. My name is light. Power. Fire. My name connects me to all those that have come before me.

Read the Poem!

September and October are two emotionally packed months for me — Hispanic Heritage Month and Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Below is a poem I wrote in honor of these two occasions.

Sí se puede

A personal narrative by Génesis Miranda Longo

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami professed over my future as she looked into my eyes.

One of hope. One of life. One uncommon in our town in Sinaloa, Mexico.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami prayed under her lips, salty from tears as she brought me over a line she called “La Frontera” (the border).

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami reassured me with as I started school in a language I didn’t speak, surrounded by people I didn’t know or understand.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami declared as she’d compare our basket of groceries with the few dollars in her hand.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami would shout, as she advocated for me to my principals so that I’d get a chance at honors classes, in a system that automatically placed me in ELL (English Language Learner) ones.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami would cheer as I journeyed through high school, until the day I became the first woman in my family to graduate.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami would hope as I applied to some of the best colleges in the world – And the words she’d firmly state when I was accepted, but feared the reality of distance and cost.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami would text me as I navigated through college on the opposite side of the country. Through the coldest of winters. Through the loneliness of holidays.

Sí Se Puede

Are the words my Mami and I exchanged with one another on Facetime as we learned she had stage three breast cancer, seconds before I headed into end-of-year exams.

Sí Se Puede

Are the word I prayed over my Mami as I sat next to her during chemotherapy and radiation treatments… when I came home to be with her and care for my brothers.

But

Sí Se Pudo

Are the words my Mami rejoiced with from the bleachers, a couple of years later, as she watched me graduate with honors from an Ivy League University.

And

Sí Se Pudo

Are the words I rejoiced with from the hospital as the doctor said I’d have more years to hear my Mami say

 Si Se Puede.

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Comments

  1. KARLA GARCIA

    Wow, what an amazing poem Genesis. Congrats on your success.

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