I’m Sorry, English Is Not My First Language

I looked up “equivocarse” in the dictionary
because I make so many mistakes
in this city, in this language,
that I want to be sure how to err correctly.

I need the vocabulary to go wrong,
to slip up with everything,
the grammar to trip up and
forget about the illusion of perfection.

Embracing the flaws,
being vulnerable is the lesson,
accepting that nothing is more perfect
than my daily imperfection.

''Born in Spain, Irene Blanco has been fascinated with written words since before she knew how to read. After going to the library every Friday of her childhood, she became a librarian, later redirecting her career toward keywords, hashtags, and newsletters. She came to New York in March 2020. At the English-Speaking Union’s Andrew Romay New Immigrants Center, her ESOL teacher is Karen Ruelle. Karl Hart is the student services manager.