My Family Loves to Play

My family, both Brown and White,
loves to play by rules to a game made at the top of the pyramid.
And we play starting at the bottom
always at the bottom
like our parents,
we will have a child with someone we don’t like,
even proclaim,

         before the accident,   

                     a want to leave.
But a child means we’re stuck,
defeated.
Even with money, we would rather marry,
would rather cloak ourselves and the child in the church
than wear happiness and love.
To be respectable, to play the pyramid game, we stay
and regret
until divorce,
or worse,
until we become too bitter and blind to know
the origin of defeat
is our desire for respect.
We have done this,
generation after generation
like some Karmic loop we never learn from,
like a ritual broken where the act and meaning connect.
like learning a boardgame without reading the rules.
Legitimacy is the family dream.
Defeat is the family legacy.

Christian Hanz Lozada is the product of an immigrant Filipino and Daughter of the American Revolution and has co-written the poetry book Leave with More Than You Came With and a history book. His poetry has been anthologized in 100 Lives (forthcoming) and Gutters and Alleyways: Poems on Poverty, and his poems and stories have appeared inHawaii Pacific Review, Dryland: A Literary Journal (forthcoming), A&U Magazine and various other journals. He hosted the Read on till Morning literary series and Harbor College Poetry Night, and has been invited to read or speak at the Autry Museum, the Twin Towers Correctional Facility, and other places throughout Southern California.