Rigorous
Volume Two, Issue 4



Demi Omaris Bazán


Puta

Todos los días, when you wake up, look yourself in the mirror and remember that you are my daughter and ninguna de mis hijas will be called a puta in the streets. Everything I tell you is for your own good and you must trust that esta vieja knows what she is talking about, I was once your age too. Los hombres hoy are a piece of shit and I am preparing you to be everything they need to think that you are, in their eyes, preferiblemente que tú eres mejor and more valuable than a puta.

Nunca, en tu vida, make me look like a fool. You will either wake up every morning, preparar café con leche. Shower. Look at yourself in the mirror and reassure yourself that everything you do is for the survival of your womanhood and reputation. Or you will wake up and like all the other pendejas y putas. You see, when I was your age, everything you did reflected on your household. If your abuelita ever found out what your vieja used to do, she would have branded me “la puta de la familia”. Do not be “la puta de la familia”.

Wear your hair out or maybe to the side, but never slicked back in a high ponytail. When you wear those tom-boy button down shirts at least, por favor, button the first two. Red lip gloss is for putas, stick to Vaseline or be happy with your dry gringa lips. Choose your perfumes delicately, let them be summer-like and sweet not sensual-strong and fire-like. Match your nail polish with your toes, nunca en tu vida do red polish. Solo las putas hacen eso.

You will learn how to cook and clean, espero que that Americanized brain of yours is capable of knowing more than just four recetas. Ningun hombre will want to eat la misma mierda every week. You will walk slowly and with no exaggeration, that waist y ese culo needs to remain as subtle as possible. Walking fiercely will cause for your hair to be wild and for the aroma of your perfume to travel, this is a slut tactic. Solo las putas hacen eso.

When you see the man that you want, remember that men talk more than the putas in the streets. Choose wisely and keep your legs cerradas until you know for sure. ¡Los hombres will tell you that it will be yours and his little secret, mentirosos! Don’t you dare forget everything your maricon of a father did to me y gracias a él, at my delicate age, I have been branded as “la puta de la familia”.




Wallflowers, Sunflowers & Petals

In an ocean of people, I am a survivor. Survivor of death, a survivor of life. I am on my 21st lap around the sun and I set alarms, that wake me up on a daily, with different labels that encourage gratitude on seeing another day. But life has its way of swallowing you whole then spitting you back out, and I would be damned to condemn myself of credit of doing this well and getting this far. I am a survivor of darkness, a survivor of society. Some people call it stubborn, perhaps even being a rebel, but I have chosen to live my life as I see fit. Through the journey of emotional rollercoasters and episodes of pain that has consumed me, my generation, and generations to come, rest in peace to the lost souls and the cut veins, but I still stand with vision oh-so-bright, and unmarked.

In the midst of the broken, I am broken but bandaged. Stitched up by my faith, my hopes, and my dreams. I am a child of god, and you do not mess with God’s kids. Life is a tree, and the fruit you reap is based upon the seeds that you sow. I envision the blinding light at the end of the tunnel, no matter the despairing obstacles or the defeatists’ voices in the wind. Many are lost but I am found. Found in my sanity, in tidal waves of peace, in rays of sunshine. In the myths of energy, feels, and vibe, my chi is undisturbed.

In a bucket filled with ice cubes, I am warm. Warm at heart, in my smile, my shiny eyes, in my soul. Hatred, envy, cursing upon others, is a poison that you yourself drink. It causes no harm to your opponent, it kills you silently, kills you slowly. I am a riddle. Usually misunderstood, often hard to figure out, but as a result, rewarding. Anyone who is discouraged by the process of decoding me, is not worth keeping.

I lack the talent of whispering, I stand with a voice that penetrates and echoes. Opinionated, honest, and pure. My person includes a package which offers aggressiveness, sharp-witted comebacks, and curse words. I am a rose with thorns, but from a garden that heals. A garden that grew through the cracks of grave and gray concrete, where you find people like me. Beneath the zenith, past the pouring clouds, you will find me. Grounding up the sticks and stones thrown at me, forming shelter. Shelter for the wallflowers, fallen sunflowers, and dried up love-me-not petals. I am a source, a force, a breath of fresh air. A source of goodness, and a force of empowerment. Seeking to help, seeking to make whole.


Demi Omaris Bazán: "I am a trilingual Literature major at York College. I was born in Dominican Republic, however, raised in Sint Maarten."




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