When Trapped

From my parents, both White and Brown,
I inherited the ability and want to leave.

Brown Dad left the Philippines before here,
Mindanao, Australia, away.

White Mom left the South before here,
her father, her sister, away.

Brown Dad, when trapped, would storm and threaten
always about leaving, disappearing
“You will starve, and I will not care.”

White Mom, when trapped, would find small victories
always reason to be hours away
“I’ve got to work.”

Both of them have itchy feet,
and look for exits as soon as they enter the room.

This is my inheritance: feeling trapped
even in comfort.

When trapped, I storm and threaten,
always trying to leave.

When trapped, I lay little ambushes for you,
small, skipped details
creating reason for you to push me away

Christian Hanz Lozada is the product of an immigrant Filipino and a Daughter of the American Revolution and has co-written the poetry book Leave with More Than You Came With and a history book. His poems and stories have appeared in Hawaii Pacific Review, Dryland: A Literary Journal (forthcoming), A&U Magazine and various other journals. He lives in Los Angeles, CA and teaches his neighbor’s kids at LA Harbor College.