Maria Corazón de la Cruz


Maria Corazón de la Cruz grew up in the panhandle of Texas with her nine siblings. She married and moved to Houston where she raised and homeschooled four children. Her love of literature and writing made homeschooling entertaining, using literature as a basis for teaching other subjects. Maria turned her attention to herself and her writing after her youngest enrolled in college. At 52 years old, Maria returned to school where she hopes to earn a BA in Spanish, and explore the possibility of becoming a translator, all the while continuing to write poetry, short stories and essays. 

Do You Speak Mexican or Something?

Yes, I speak Mexican, with a curl of the lip and a swerve of the hip, I speak Mexican.
In a tight red dress and a wanton wiggle in my walk,
A crucifix on a silver chain hanging between my breasts,
A rosary in one hand and a switchblade in the other, I speak Mexican.

Soy una Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz in all her genius,
Y Frida Kahlo in all her glorious colors,
Y una Maria Felix character, fierce and powerful,
But made in America kind of Mexican.

I spit when I talk and I laugh when I spit, I speak Mexican.
I get a thrill and a chill when I let out a trill, I speak Mexican.
Soy “mas cabrona que bonita, y, mira, que bonita soy”,
Soy mandona y fregona, because I’m that kind of Mexican.

I’m a two-stepping, head-stomping, heart-stopping Mexican, American.
I speak Tex-Mex - I speak Spanglish, I speak that kind of Mexican.
My short I’s are long E’s and I speak as I please, and mean what I say.
I’m an “sh” sounds like “ch” and “ch” sounds like “sh” kind of Mexican.

I’m your all American Fritos, Doritos, and Tostitos kind of Mexican.
I’m the frijoles, tortillas and jalapenos kind.
I speak taco, salsa and chips, and enchilada Mexican.
Call me Margarita, I speak tequila, I’m that kind of Mexican.

Like Mexican coffee, dark, bitter pero muy dulce kind of Mexican.
Like tres leches cake, rich, moist and achingly sweet.
Like calaveras, pan dulce, champurrado y Abuelita’s chocolate.
Empanadas, birthday cake and banana pudding Mexican.

I’m a green, white and red, and red, white and blue Mexican.
I’m a Cinco de Mayo and July the Fourth kind of Mexican.
A Vincente Fernandez and George Strait kind of Mexican.
Mariachi, Spanish guitars and rock and roll kind of Mexican.

I speak pickup trucks, picnicking and pinatas in the park,
Dancing barefooted in the kitchen while making abuela’s tamales,
A baby on the left hip and a machete in the right hand,
I’ll call you papi and you can call me mami kind of Mexican.

I’m an anything I wanna be Mexican, American.
Yes, I speak Mexican. I speak English, Spanish and I can read as well.
I’m Maria Corazón de la Cruz Mexican-American,
Yes, I do, I do speak Mexican or something.