All Mothers Are Refugees

Refugees from bad policies, bad environments, bad men

Gwen Frisbie-Fulton
Human Parts

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Photo: ProtoplasmaKid via Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA 4.0

BBeing a mother is like eating bread with your hands. Pulling off small chunks from the loaf. “Here, love, eat this.”

I study the picture on the cover of the newspaper. Metal slates, razor wire, Tijuana. Pink flip-flops and diapers. I look at the grip of the Honduran mother’s hands on the arms of her daughters as they run, a teargas canister exploding beside them. The mother’s shirt is riding up over her belly; pink and purple thread, Elsa and Anna, princesses that white America celebrated in their journey to a better life only a few short years ago.

“She shouldn’t have brought her children.” That’s easy, of course, for pundits like Kellyanne Conway to say.

What do you carry with you when you walk 4,000 miles for a better life? Water? A picture of home? Something that smells like your mother? A small plastic ball for your daughter? Do you carry the names of the neighbors you had to leave behind? Maybe your son’s favorite dog, your daughter’s favorite doll? Do you carry a bit of soil in the tread of your shoe? Do you carry memories of better days, days before your government forgot about you, before the gangs found your brother? Do you carry bread wrapped in an old bandana? “Aqui, mijo, come esto.”

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Gwen Frisbie-Fulton
Human Parts

Mother. Southerner. Storytelling Bread and Roses. Bottom up stories about race, class, gender, and the American South. *views my own*