Teen Poetry Collections

Being Mixed

by a young woman, age 15

I’m not accepted by my family.
I’m judged for being only half
and half. I have never felt fully accepted
by my father’s family
or my mother’s family.
I always feel like an outsider.
People think it’s a blessing to be mixed
but sometimes it can be a curse.
Words can hurt like a bullet in the heart—
words like half-breed, too dark.
My dad’s side—they’re Ethiopian church-going, kind of fanatics.
My mom’s side—we’re not religious.
They put me down for not being religious, being a sinner,
not being able to speak my native tongue.
It isn’t my fault—my father has never been in my life
to be able to teach me
I always wanted to fit in,
not feel like the black sheep of the family.
I want them to tell me they love me
rather than making me feel like an outsider,
out of place, never comfortable.
Sometimes I feel ashamed to be only half,
but it’s not like I was asked to be born.
I just want the feeling of being mixed to be beautiful.