This one on my chest, La Virgen de Guadalupe
outside a prison cell. You can see my father’s
face behind bars. He’s praying. This is for
my father, locked up since Edgar was in
preschool. This one…it makes me cry. I love
my father so much. He was the best man, pero
porque he didn’t have any papers, he couldn’t
get stable work for us… So he’s doing twenty
years in Lompoc. He’ll probably die there.
I miss him.
ACT 11, SCENE 11
TATTOO REMOVAL CLINIC, LASER ROOM
This, three dots on my hand…tres puntos.
Yeah, it’s the 13. But it’s also the three
places a gangster ends up. In the hospital,
in prison, and in the grave. You can barely
see it, and only another gangster knows what
it means. This one on my wrist, the Mexican
flag. My mother and father both immigrated
here from Jalisco. People think just cause
I’m guera, I’m not Mexican. It’s like all
Mexicans are supposed to look the same.
So I got it to say, Well, we come in all
shapes and colors, pa’que sepan. You know,
like I had to prove myself a lot growing up.
This one on my arm used to say Sparky.
I covered it up when Edgar was a baby.
When I left la clika. Now it’s supposed to
look like some tribal design. I don’t know
what it is. You can’t really bury the past,
anyway. It’s not like I stopped being Sparky.
Not for the homegirls and the homeboys. Not
for my enemies. Not for my mother. Not even
for myself. I’ll always be Sparky. Just like
I’ll always be a loca. I just don’t call
myself that no more.
TRITON | WINTER 2016 30