I am Elizabeth. I live in North Carolina.
Ella es Isabel. Vive en Guatemala.

I live in a quiet neighborhood.
Isabel vive en un barrio notaria.

I enjoy my comfortable home.
Isabel must abandon her family home.
I run on a treadmill.
Isabel runs to escape gangs.

I stroll down park lanes.
Isabel travels treacherous mountain paths.

I call Lyft for rides.
Isabel boards a refugee-crowded bus.

I earn a salary that covers my needs.
Isabel uses the last of her savings for necessities.

I snuggle with my child under warm blankets.
Isabel cradles hers in a worn sleeping bag.

I clasp my toddler’s hand when crossing streets.
Isabel hugs hers close as they reach the border crossing.

I plan a secure future for my child.
Isabel espera que su hijo tenga un futuro
Isabel hopes her child has a future.

About the Poem

I often ask myself what is going to happen to the children of the Isabelas. How can they live a life of dignity? My six grandchildren are healthy, happy, educated because of where they were born and the resources of their parents.

About the Author

Joanne Kennedy Frazer is a retired peace and justice director and educator for faith-based organizations. She writes on issues of justice, the natural world, and spirituality. Her poetry has appeared in many anthologies, journals, ezines, and magazines. Her chapbook, Being Kin, was published in 2019. Her home is Durham, NC.

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