Thirteen Ways to View Immigration

Poet Wallace Stevens wrote “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird” as a way to examine and explore perspective, not just for a common bird but for people and issues alike. In the poem below, Val Lozano looks, wonders, and asks what are the different perspectives of immigrants.

Thirteen Ways to View Immigration

I

A mother

Bearing three children

Seeks refuge

 

 

III

A son who needs to support his family

How will he get the funds

When will he send money home

 

 

III

A desire for a “better life”

Where will she accomplish this

 

 

IV

Her family is leaving

She doesn’t know how they’ll get there

She doesn’t know where they’ll go

But they are leaving

 

 

 

V

He tried to leave

He couldn’t

They caught him

Maybe next time

 

 

VI

Everyday is a constant worry

The stares

The whispers

The faces

Everyday

 

 

VII

I see the pain my parents go through

I see how much they miss it

I see how badly they want to go back

But they can’t

 

 

VIII

She’s one of the lucky ones

Blue eyes

Blonde hair

Pale skin

She got lucky

 

 

IX

My dad didn’t speak the language

My dad didn’t know the people

My dad didn’t know how he’d do it

But he made it happen

 

 

X

I know my dad misses his mother

I know he misses his family

I know he misses his home

 

 

XI

My mom remembers it all

The smell

The views

The people

All the time that passed

And she still remembers it clearly

 

XII

I will forever try my best at what I do

Not only just for me

But for the sacrifices my parents made for me

All their suffering didn’t go unrewarded

 

 

XIII

My dad will return one day

Not today

Not tomorrow

Not in a year

But he will

 

Wallace Stevens: Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird Link

https://terebess.hu/english/haiku/stevens.html