the struggle-painting

painting, “The Struggle,” by Fior E. Plasencia


by Fior E. Plasencia


Queens, floating in the bedstead of Rockaway Beach

she woke up like a clutter, headache and all

shoes, pants, and skirt on the floor of 107 Street

not a prostitute from a third world

sweet home, sour home

With a crown of oranges and blueberries—Let’s Go Mets!

turn on the cables of your dislocated intellect

be where you want to want be

driving in traffic at rush hour

long brunette hair crossing in your highway

making backflips and landing on the tacos poblanos of Elmhurst,

seven train on your porch,

let Jackson Heights live in the breast of South America

and Astoria in Greek mythology


Queens, are you a queen?

Short sleeves and Jordan sneakers,

graffiti in your cranium

Q112 rushing through Liberty Avenue

not a whore, not one

bodega in the corner of the women with gloomy skin

South Ozone park rousing up again in your couch

long- and short-term homecoming

feeding the nightmares

feeding the immortals

stop the A train with your tongue

reincarnate the ovaries

Pssss—damn shorty!

Give me call when you need me.”


Queens, you lived in the abdominal of Jamaica Avenue

married to the small stores and vanished enduring

line in Sutphin Boulevard to buy a MetroCard

driving the “dollar van” with your nose

and smell of cheap cologne sold in the street

it’s too hot, it’s too cold

you got it all


Queens how did you bring Chinatown here?

Near the mall,

crawling on top of the Cinema

order to go, order to dine-in

the year of the dragon in the cultural vessel

pass me a slice of your

Asian mist,

bring me


Queens, why you gotta be so Italian?

Howard Beach,

bringing pasta everywhere you go

What you talkin’ about?

Get outta here!

I still dream about you,



Queens, why am I losing my calculations to define you?

I still don’t know what you are

every station has another vibe, towns

assimilated into the American endurance

Middle East with a turban of hope

Caribbean festival on your arms

European mambo

Americas hidden secret with legs wide open

Asian street dance

you are home

away from all


Why must you be one

and many,



Fior E. Plasencia was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to New York at the age of 12. She began writing short poems, often using what she was learning in her bilingual class. Her work has appeared in The Acentos Review and Teamguerreras.com. An artist and poet, she studied History and Education at City University of New York, Brooklyn College, and is currently working on publishing her first book, in Spanish, English, and Spanglish, which deals with the dilemma of being a woman and an immigrant and not being understood with an accent. You can find her work at mujerconvozpoetry.wordpress.com.