In posting last week’s poem and this one following I am for myself taking the lid off something I don’t know much about. The lid can be replaced easily. I do it, you will too. I pull it off to get a small view of something I know is “out there,” it’s actually right here. I find it in my heart, I listen to the music, read the books, watch the movies. Something in me knows what these poems speak of from the inside out. Something in me wants to grasp and shy away at the same time.
Here’s the poem:
I could spend..
ALL DAY & NIGHT
but I found out 2day, ALL
I had 2do was look in
to my horror & happy realization
I too must live and let live and die –
And it doesn’t have 2B a big deal not 2, but
born on 3/13/1973
Next month marks 26 years sober for me. It marks a transition I was ready to support and I found support for myself. I found people to believe in me and carry me through so I could carry myself. I believe it was easier for me because people expected me to be OK. No one thought I was anything but competent. Some of that was my “look,” some of it was because it was easier for them if I was OK and they weren’t going to push looking too deep.
One night Brian Williams spoke about Michelle Obama on the evening news. She had gone to Baskin-Robbins near the Whitehouse for ice cream with her girls. No one noticed. She was served ice cream. That was the end of it.
Now I don’t know why she told this story. I hope it had something to do with Racism in this country. I hope she was telling us that after all this time, after all this progress, after all this getting a black president, there is still invisibility for black people.
While I do not know for sure I have no question that the authors of these poems are black. And while I do not know for sure I am pretty certain that when they ask for help they won’t get what I got. I’m pretty sure.