Contentious – Citlali Rose
Conentious | Poetry by Rosanna Alvarez | image via


“You’ve got a chip on your shoulder.”

But it’s not a chip

And it hardly resides

on these shoulders of mine


Allow me to elaborate

About the 36 mile gaping crevice

Threatening to unravel

“this bridge called my back”


scarred territory

covered by the bandage

that is my baggage

chartered by the legacy of rage

infracted by transgressions of aggression

impacted by the violation of my nation

compacted by the collective susto of my gente

retracted by the filtered remedios of my youth


a part of me grew

wary of the


tried to break

my spirit while

division and derision


my peace


innocence marred

haunted substratum

a perpetual why

yet soul patched the wounds

spotted like the jaguar

that is me

clinging to the earth

alive and free


So excuse me

while I correct

the misconception


my spine

with the beauty

of my twine


finding solace

in the swearing


I find




my battle scars

with pride.



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