What it Means to be Black

It means being the mother & father of teenagers named humanity
who don’t acknowledge their parents/

It means walking through fires with bare feet/

thinking the pain felt by that journey is a bad thing/
until you see the results/


Rock & Roll/ Funk/ Jazz/ Blues/ Hip-Hop

Culture/ Nina Simone’s Voice/

Sammy Davis Jr’s Rhythm/

& Huey P. Newton’s Audacity/

It is believing you are less than/
until realizing you are greater than/

like a mathematic symbol turned the opposite way/

It mean saying Ashe/
to the Kings & Queens in front of you/
who came from the Kings & Queens before you/
as well as the Kings & Queens we collectively raise/

Vikka/ Vikka/ Village/

It means knowing that unity is the answer/
& being scared to ask the question/
Why it’s so hard for us to come together?/

It means having empathy for your enemies/
& wondering if your people/ will abuse their power/ the same way
as whitey/ after finally uniting as one?/

It means paying respect to the slaves who were too scared to
run/ as well as the ones who got away/

It means knowing your complexion is a reflection of your

Used mostly because/
in the event a slave got away/ it would be harder for their brown
skin/ to blend in/

It means accepting the truth; that you have to be more valuable
then they say you are/ since they copy us like some little boys
copy the behaviors of their older brothers/

It means finding a way to win in a game where the rules change
with every forward step you take/

It means constantly turning ugliness into

beauty/ mis-fortune into fashion/

struggles into a soldier’s stripes/

Food Stamps into Thanksgiving/

A funeral into a family reunion/

A Zoom meeting into a Sunday service/

& a tire shop/ into a gambling spot/

It means seeing mother earth inside your skin

tone/ chocolate in your refection/

& God in your eyes/

It means breast feeding the children of the people that hate you/
& praying more for them/

than they do for you/

It mean talking the talk/ & walking the walk/
regardless of the crabs on the edge of the bucket/

It means pretending or acting ok/

when it’s really not ok/

& constantly telling yourself it will be ok/

hoping to God it will be someday/

& hoping we can handle the glory when it comes our

way/ & sharply into focus/

Being black is knowing you are great/

No matter who accept that ~


author/novelist/poet also known as Graffiti Bleu, loves and lives in northern California. He was born in New York City and received some serious game and [learn more]

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