A friend…well, I don’t know that we’re “friends” yet. I’ll say a fellow teacher set me up by asking me to perform at the teacher talent show in front my boss and the principal. Then he laid on the guilt like an extra layer of peanut butter and said, “…but we ask the kids to be vulnerable all the time.” So, I sat down to write and this is what came out:
My Blackness disappears and Whiteness replaces.
My Brownness traces the outline of my reality reminding me of the substance in my humanity.
I am the essence of Shakespeare’s iambic pentameter; weak, strong, weak, strong, weak strong.
An ever-present pent up meter maid issuing socially conscious and politically minded tickets.
My heavy fines will remind you that you need to think.
Raise your shackled wrists towards the branches.
Force your free phalanges to grasp at every branch, which stems from every issue
Understand them all then take sides.
Their stems trace back to the root of this society.
Watch buildings seemingly strong symbolizing the system crumble from within
Stand up. Rise in ovation.
Teeter on tiptoes between two selves. Self 1) the person you are supposed to become. Self 2) the person you are.
Use your feet and stomp
Make the ground resonate with your power
The aftershock of your athletic drumbeat on this Earth will break the oppressor from within because they are without substantive cause.
All of us are oppressors and oppressed. Equally.
Until we can put a finger on our “duality” we are merely hypocrites dressed as gift givers gifting blame and ignoring ownership.
So take what is yours. Own it.
Wash yourself and rise from the Ganges anew. A second birth only this one at your own hand.
Redefine your Blackness, Whiteness, Brownness, or whatever “ness” is necessary for you to be whole enough to allow others to be themselves.
Be not broken my new community.
For while we lay shards we are weapons in the hands of others against each other.
Tap into the electromagnetism within your system and rise.
Be the intellectual entity that exhales equity
The gracious griot reminding our community of its history and foretelling of reimagined stereotypes.
Be not the beacon of media or any other than yourself.
Pull together your shards and stand up