Black Bird


She was taught to hate her skin.
Her skin that her ancestors picked cotton in.
The same skin that sent her grandmother to the back of the bus.
The same skin that meant her grandfather couldn’t drink from the same fountain as the whites.
.She was taught to hate her sisters, who looked just like her,
all because they were a few shades lighter.
She was taught that her hair wasn’t beautiful.
The same hair that her grandmother was told needed to be straight like them
The hair that prevented her mother from getting a job in corporate America.
The same hair she was told to never leave natural.

They said our culture didn’t matter.
So the masters stuffed it out completely.
They didn’t allow us to express our African culture.
Exchanging Kunta’s name with Toby, then cutting of his leg.
They told us we were less than them.
They even called us “niggers” as a reminder of our place in their lives and society.

They said we looked like monkeys.
And that our features were not attractive.
Her round nose, plump lips, and curvy hips intimidate them.
And when she speaks loud and proud, they tell her to hush.
Such personalities are called ghetto and unacceptable in society where white men in fancy business suits have the last say.
So she covers and hides herself like a turtle in its shell, and never attempts to speak her mind again. After a while she must realize she is all she has in this world, and no one is going to save her.
So she wipes her tears, brushes herself off, and straightens her crown, because that black women is a queen.
Her melanin screams Africa, every vein in her body runs with the blood of a thousand warriors.
Every step she takes brings a chill down their back with fear because she now knows her worth.

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