What I Wish You Would See By Michelle Gordon

What I Wish You Would See

Instead of calling me, “Exotic,” look at the maps on my ankles that tell you where I am, where I will go, and where my roots have grown

Instead of asking “Do you dance like the girls in the video?” notice the movement in
the wave of my fingers when I reach for God
Notice the sway of my hips when I walk with the pride that others try to strip me of

Instead of asking “Can I touch your hair?” watch how it outshines
the amber waves of gold
Listen to the stories of the hands that belonged to the women and men who have brushed,
braided, and styled this hair

Read the lines on the back of my hands
The freckles on my back
The eyelashes that flutter around my dark brown eyes

I’m so much more than the boxed stereotype
I don’t fit the picture frame of a black woman you molded

So, instead of saying, “I wish I could be tan like you,” understand
that women like me share so many hues
We make a rainbow look dull

By Michelle Gordon


Michelle Gordon is a New Yorker who loves old school R&B, Jazz, black and white movies, bookstores and of course writing. She is a contributor for Germ Magazine.

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