Hair

Location

i sat in my imagination
recreated music videos
 
imagined my skin bleached 
by the lights
 
as the music made my hair
feel long, 
 
flank
 
soft like rapunzel
 
like goldilocks
 
fairytale pretty
like the fair skinned girls
photoshop’ed and airbrushed 
t.v. screen angelic
 
for magazines .
 
my hair was far too africa
 
too middle passage
 
too cotton picking plantation
for anthony sorrenti
 
he told rosella, tatiana and alexandra
that my hair was ugly
 
made me feel cursed
 
heard his voice on grandmothers tongue 
when she told me
that my hair favored a “butu”
 
dark and tough
ugly and unculture’
 
just another nappy headed chick
in this jessica simpson world
where even her dark haired sister
exchanged nose, chin and lips for fame.
 
in high school
i was neither jessica nor ashlee
 
i was venus hottentot
coiled and tangled in mother’s comb.
 
grease and oils did no justice .
 
my hair made bo-bos pop
before they secured parts
 
i was called erykah badu,
macy gray,
jill scott,
india. arie
as if these women were insults   
 
as if these women
were reason for shame
to burn the seat of my stomach,
 
ignorance blinded me
would not let me understand
the beauty in my hair
 
it’s ability to defy gravity
when poised in braids
 
poised in fros
 
poised in freedom
when it reached out
to worship the sun
 
my hair is refusal to assimilate.
 
 
once got into a fight
after someone chose to have my hair
dance with fire.
 
somebody actually set my hair on fire
 
made hair follicles move
like michael jackson
 
taught my hair embarrassment
because it was other than curly
 
other then mixed chick,
 
other than coolie
 
my roots felt 
in need of wash and sets
perms and hot combs
 
in need of dominican hands
to condition me fairytale pretty
like the fair skinned girls
photoshop’ed and airbrushed 
t.v. screen angelic
 
for magazines.

 

Comments

Need to talk?

If you ever need help or support, we trust CrisisTextline.org for people dealing with depression. Text HOME to 741741