The title was inspired by the poem “She had some horses” by Joy Harjo.

I.
She had brown hands that lead her five-year old in a dance
She had brown hands spotted with brown dots like a flour tortilla
She had brown hands that trembled as she counted rent money knowing she had $10 left over to feed her babies
She had brown hands inchadas cómo una concha recién horniada, calientes despues de planchar lavado ajeno.

II.
She had brown hands con uñas rojas y puntiagudas como un pincel doing their brush work against the rough skin of her back setting it afire. Red, fire-rivers ran from her shoulders to the small of her back.
She had brown hands fuertes like a tortilleras, got into her, despertando sueños profundos.
She had brown hands delicadas like an abuelas, caressed softness she didn’t know she had like the laughter trapped in between shoulders blades.
She had brown hands, brown hands that covered her eyes, cupped her mouth, restricted her breath; fit perfectly around her throat.
She had brown hands perfect for and collecting her offerings, shiny, silky, sopping, ejaculates that erupted cause her brown hands read her body like braille.

III.
She had brown hands, gripping black hands, and white hands and olds hands forming a human chain of resistance, cutting the 101 freeway, refusing to let another jail go up. #JusticeLA #BlackLivesMatter
She had brown hands that balled and shot into the air in protest, “POWER TO THE PEOPLE!” Angry punches against injustices, the polluted LA air ricocheting off her chants.
She had brown hands, wiping beads of sweat, her palms also moist from the August heat, the energy urging to change the course for young men of color was palpable.

IV.
She had brown hands scarred from scorched metal. A hot metal star branded on the backside, a moon on her middle finger, viper teeth on her wrist.
She had brown hands that liked to punch walls, hitting just enough to pull back not all the way broken. Hidden childhood habits that she kept too much in contact with.
She had brown hands that weren’t able to block, protect, embrace.
She had brown hands that knew how to lose her down a trail of cuentos
She had brown hands that gave her the courage her mouth often suppressed, emboldened with a grip of the pen.
She has brown hands that don’t want to hold back.

Related: More ‘Viva Macondo’ entries

Claudia Rodriguez

Claudia Rodriguez

Claudia Rodriguez is a community scholar, educator, creative writer and performer form Compton. For the past sixteen years, she has developed work with marginalized communities. As a COLA Fellow, an award...