"Microdermabrasion" by Katherine Huang
First Place for College Poetry
Asians have it easy: straight hair, straight A’s.
Off to Ivies to order IV’s.
Hey, hey, girl in the pink coat, what does
ching chong ding dong ting tang tong
How come you talk weird? Where are you from,
anyway? No, not like New Jersey, I mean like,
can we dig a hole to your real house?
General Tso’s chicken is so good!
How often does your mom
make it at home?
Name something from American history
about race issues.
Good! Now name something
from American history
about Asian race issues.
Asians can play two instruments and tennis.
Asians in America are either bananas/Twinkies or FOBs.
Asians must be good at math.
Asians can draw.
Asians are shy.
Asians are obedient.
Asian immigrants speak English broken pidgin funny.
Asians have no eyes.
Asians are too serious.
Asian parents are always controlling.
Asian kids do not have the guts to defy their parents.
Asians do not have emotions.
Asians are not athletic (except for tennis, maybe).
These are the tiny diamonds
that tickle away my top layers
until I wake up with my face
pinker than yellow
and cannot remember why.