Seconded By: Selaru Ovidiu,
A project collaboration with Patricia Smith
Sandro is working hard to bring people together with love and respect, fighting political, social
and racial injustices with this body of work. This project is about, "Enough is Enough”! The saying “Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me” is a big lie. Today, bullying through labeling, name calling and attaching false identities to people is having life-long effects on our
population. To name a few negative effects: erodes a victim’s sense of self-worth,
causes kids to compromise their beliefs and values, opens the doors to violence,
meditated suicides and effects mental health. We are hoping that through this art piece,
we can bring awareness, change, and be part of a solution to make this world a kinder
and more inclusive place for all of us to live.
POEM BY PATRICIA SMITH
In place on America’s shuddering sidewalk,
we are legion and we are glorious. We are men
with our mouths on the shoulders of other men,
tree trunk women spilling past the borders
of our clothes, nuestra respiración comenzó
en el tierra del sol abrasador, we are the scion
of a furious north star, we are dimming elders,
near-breathless in our wheeled lives. Still
thrashing feral with fever dreams of Vietnam,
we are homeless on storm-shredded cardboard,
We are our churches, we are the outstretched
hand and the dull plop of coins into that hand.
We are bookish and bifocal-ed, brown faces
upturned to Allah, women with a thirst for
women, Sikhs with miles of silken hair bound
heavenward, We are every structure and tinge,
every plummet and fly. And we hurt when
when we are damned with names that are not
our own, when even our President cheers on
the darkening of the air, teaching his flock
the spiteful names he thinks will disappear us.
We suffer the sound of those bladed syllables
in the deep bowl of our bodies. The spartan
consonants and oily spit and hiss of the sound
is designed to saw into the skin, and it does—
it is in the body that the sound spews venom
as it hurtles toward our undefended hearts.
The sound is the stick and it is the stone.
And it doesn’t matter how fervently we try
to glide unwounded past its vile purpose,
it claws at us where we are softest. The name
that is not our name begins a scar, but never
never reaches the heart. So long seen as less,
our first brutal lesson was learning to separate
what we are told we are
from what we are.