Mi Raíz (My Root)



This poem demonstrates the importance of the Latino/Latina vote in this election year. The reader will be able to find that the Latino experience described in the poem resonates with many other Latino/Latina experiences within our families, communities and society.

Keywords: Latino experience, Mi Raíz, Voto Latino, Latino poetry, Chicano Poetry

How to Cite: Sandoval, C. M. (2012) “Mi Raíz (My Root)”, Poroi. 8(2). doi:

Poroi, 8, 2, Sandoval Project on Rhetoric of Inquiry

Mi Raíz (My Root)

Christian Michael Sandoval

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA USA

My abuelito's hands

are a golden brown.

Like a desolate desert,

canyons span the length of his palms.

His landscape-like skin

rough and cracked.

The fields of Iowa

made his hands

appear dirty...

peppered with sunspots

and stained by the soil

from tending crops.

No soaps can wash that story away.

His skin weathered,

his bones brittle,

his trembling hands

ask for more work:

more fields,

more crops

to keep them busy

as he watches T.V.

He is not bitter towards the fields that forever hold his youth...

forever hold his health...

The cracks and pops of his spine were not for nothing.

He has built everything I know.

His hands help hold the books I read everyday.

His hands glide across the page as I write.

His hands are mine as I hold the ballot.

My hands will speak for him

and the path he has paved for me.

A voiceless man from Mexico

gave me a voice this election year

and I shall vote

because the canyons of his hands

run as deep as his blood in mine.

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