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“Mixed Girls” by Lauren Hoogkamer

Trace my skin:
White and black and brown —
Indescribable, I am all the colors in between.

Look in my eyes:
Slanted, big and small —
They’re all the shapes of round.

Feel my hair:
It’s curly, kinky, nappy
Sleek and straight and soft.

Kiss my lips:
Full and wide, small and thin.

Run your hands —
Down the sides of my pear-shaped,
Hourglass, will-o’-the-wisp hips.

I am tall and short, old and young
Beautiful in my own way.

Wrap me in your arms
Embrace the history
Of the seven continents of me.

Don’t ask —
Don’t let the details matter.
For now, just let it be me and you.

Lauren Hoogkamer is the Assistant Historic Preservation Officer for the City of Tacoma. She holds an MS in Historic Preservation and an MS in Urban Planning from Columbia University, as well as a BA/BA in Print Journalism and History and a Minor in Business from the University of Southern California. Previously, Lauren was an historic preservation consultant under her own business, Cultural Resources Research and Consulting. She also has received awards for journalism and poetry and has research published by the World Monuments Fund. More of her work can be found at https://laurenperez.blogspot.com/