Power of Blue Ranger
“Ma’am,” said Blue
through the driver-side window. “Ma’am,
can you step out of the vehicle
for a moment.” Moment
one: driver, white, female, mother, 33,
looked to her right. Moment two:
passenger, black, male, 28, looked to the
backseat. Moment three, four, five, six: four
white wide-eyed children, 4, 6, 7, 9,
watched Blue and Mom and Dad exchange
sideways glances. I watched Mom step out.
“Step aside,” said Blue
to the 5 foot 2 little woman. “Step aside
so I can ask you a question.”
They walked toward the back of the
dark blue Odyssey. She checked
the taillights out of habit. “Do you
know this man?” She didn’t speak, only
pressed her lips together tightly. He
repeated: “Do you know this man?”
“That’s my husband.” Her tone:
sharp enough to cut his blue wrists.
Her eyes: tasers.
His nod said acceptable answer. It
said good thing. It said better safe than . . .
“Sorry to disturb you, Ma’am,” said Blue
to Mom. He thought nothing wrong with a little
over protection. Maybe she’d
disregard the misconception because she was
similarly skinned. There was no
offense to her, right? It was a
A simple, harmless state of thought is
what we’re told this is. A nation
naive to the biggest picture. A generation
“easily offended” they say,
and yet we’re still explicit. We can’t
hold ourselves accountable to our own
when we can’t identify the prejudice
behind our assumptions.
The malfunctions in our tracks forward. The
dysfunctions in our mentality.
It’s not an honest mistake. It’s a poisoned
mindset. An inessential outlet. An
overworking asset to our ignorance
of privilege. Take the time to recognize
the distortion in your perception and
straighten the tracks you lay for your sons.
Discrimination is a practiced habit.
That day I watched a foreigner:
officer, white, male, Texan, 35, 6 foot 1,
separate my native mother from her
young blood and accuse my father, an alien
according to supposition, of our abduction.
I was almost ten when, for the first time
in my life, I saw colors symbolize more than
just a skin tone.
I saw Black and I saw
White and I saw
My name is Desiree Brown. I’m a college undergraduate currently working toward a degree in English at UNC Charlotte (University of North Carolina at Charlotte). “Power of the Blue Ranger” was inspired by an experience I had when I was a young child, as well as the riots here in Charlotte a few months ago. I feel as if my poetry would be a great addition to The Scene & Heard Journal because I often create poetry that people can relate to and that fights for something.