We do not write poetry

We do not write poems
Because they’re taut
Embellished vignettes
That fail to convey
How our skins serve as
Walls to project narratives
Of mindless gory crimes
And archetypes. Wit or sass,
The difference between
Confinement and spring break.
Darker women, unworthy
Heralds of sophistication,
Our mere physical presence
In a space otherwise devoid
Of other ‘others’ like us, seen as
Overstaying our earthly welcome.
School’s out and so are we
Cloud nine careless on a wine train
Unpermed kinks on display
Finally embracing ourselves,
Embracing each other.
A balmy silver lining
Amidst a stone-cold year.
You don’t see colour, and
Still you inspect my keratin,
A texture unlike yours:
‘…woah, can I touch it?’
‘Depends. Am I allowed to
Stroke you like a pet too?’
Behind every ‘sassy’ woman
On a noose
There’s a witty sophomore
On the loose.
What is revered in
Your favourite male comedians
You obliterate in us,
Four limbs for an eye twitch.
Violence breeds violence
But my kind breed
Suspects not children,
Wrongdoers not victims.
Devout churchgoer or hoodlum?
The world asks us daily
To euthanise our individuality
And expectations
Of being treated fairly,
Not like melanoma anomalies
On a patient intent to radiate us.
The lack of intersectionality
Makes me feel as if
I’m a writer stuck in
A black woman’s body.
Like I could have been
One of the canon’s greats
If it wasn’t for this mole-sized
Minor pigmentation mistake.
Like I could have been staff
At Prairie View University
But my role within
The scholarly community
Won’t be as a post-racial Caliban
But another statistical casualty;
Dead bodies cannot write poetry.

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