REFLECTION: A TALE OF BIAS PERCEPTIONS
Written By Ebony Long
Upon my arrival could they have seen the hatred I wore on my face? See it smoldering hot inside of my eyes? They should have as it was an accurate reflection of themselves of their hate. A reflection. Did they notice how I skipped some steps as I climbed up the concrete stairs leading to the trains? When I saw their white faces. A group of white people gathered to socialize among themselves, how free they didn’t realize they could be. Blacks would be looked upon as a “gang” or a “pack”. Even told to “break it up” by the train security. That’s how my people were treated when gathered to socialize. I smacked my lips and quickly shifted my stare onto something, anything else, something dark. My hands. I would not look them in the eye, no way I would give one of them the pleasure of bidding me a friendly nod. Nausea gripped my belly, creating a bad taste inside of my mouth. My ancestors had to speak a greeting, they were ordered to pay respects to the white man, however I did not. I could clutch my bag and shrink away, I could cross the avenue just because they were populating it. I could pass by without as much scrutiny as my blackness would allow. I kept feeding my hatred. It was constantly hungry. That was how they fed me, large delectables of repression, bias and ridicule. For me to not even acknowledge a white person’s presence was somehow a personal victory, I knew not all whites were so hateful, so hurtful but I didn’t care. I was reflecting unto them the exact way they constantly judged us. Two wrongs don’t make a right. But two rights keep getting me wronged. I’d never shouted “honky” out my car window while passing a couple of white kids, just for them doing right, only hustling back to class. I had a white friend once or twice and not a moment went by where I couldn’t be convinced that she wouldn’t bring up my blackness, so those friendships never lasted too long. I was deeply saddened to be so contemptible, why’d I have to be? It would cause wrinkles in my smooth coco face or shorten the span of my life I’m sure. I wanted to be open and celebrate our differences. My hate was wearing me down. How could they not notice the unbalanced way we blacks were treated for being the color of the earth? How could they not take any notice that our pursuit of happiness was taken away? We were barely able to strive. Scarcely thrive. I wished I could let my hatred go. It doesn’t do any good for anyone. But I’m only just reflecting what they do. They should see the image I’ve had to view. My Grandpa used to tell me the only 2 sure things in life were that I’d stay black and die, but I say to myself that, while I’m alive since they gonna hate us anyway. Fine. I’ll do my best to reflect my hate back onto you. You know what I mean group, stereotype you all, can’t blame me, I learned it best from watching ya’ll.
THE WAYS I DESPISE YOU.
Everytime I ask you to lend me a hand you never seem to be able to tackle the task.
But you seem to be able and willing when your mother regularly asks.
The ways I despise you.
When I look to you for support, crying, trying to stay strong you back out quickly and really start a fight, blaming me for everything telling me all the ways I'm wrong and your right.
The ways I despise you.
Once or twice I didn't have my half, I thought to come and speak with you. " I don't get paid till next week", you began to belittle me for hours, yell and scream too. Last I checked we were supposed to be a team, just us two.
The ways I despise you.
You took all the cool electronic gadgets to your office, I asked you why you do, you responded very rudely: that you think I might steal it from you.
The ways I despise you.
You leave our home and hate to say when you'll return back to me, saying it's a mans world and your free. I can't see why you keep disrespecting me.
The ways I despise you.
If I don't get up and go real far away from you, I'll start to despise my own self too.
That just will not do.
The ways I despise you.
Home Sweet Home. By Ebony L.
He’d been an underling 98% of his life. A brittle, thin manboy. Curly black face hair rooted his pointy chin, his body halting development it seemed at the age of 12. Bummer. He'd predicted his sallow fate on a daily basis now. 22 Years old Asheley Buistavill wanted to die and he warmed a bit of his plans: A nostalgic warmth like a crochet quilt engulfed his skeleton thin frame causing him to lean back against the cement wall. Finally some plan produced logic to him, (it had been years since his last actual plan had been planned out) Death was his final fate, he was excited, who would find his corpse? The temporary ruckus it would stir from the “dog walkers' ' seemed shameful to him, he deserved no ruckus he was a homeless minion. More scrutiny then he’d ever get in his living years. Ashely B. was fed up with being without a dwelling that he could belong to be allowed to put his scoffed loafers beside each other in a hall closet. Having less of a home was exhausting and draining his vitality: the little he had, it wasn’t enough to sway him from ending his own barren lifestyle.Jump.He’d jump from the towns Lexington Plaza building, 27 stories would do him in. Ashley wondered if he’d succumb plunging down past the 5th floor? Or the 14th floor? Or would he just plunge aware and alive until his body hit the ground then splat onto the cement.The gravel and oil deposits will be his resting spot: finally a place to rest, no “move along sir” he couldn’t move along “so & so” cause Ashley would be no more. Homeless no more . Belonging to death was fine. Climbing the deserted Influx Plaza, Ashley B. thought of his Mom’s Carolina pork and slaw, screw that slaw. Screw privacy and calm relaxation, screw the land he no longer could live off, once he’d made it to the 27th floor, he looked up into the atmosphere, picturing a wrong turn he’d taken to get him at this place, a place impossible to see any hope in. Homeless, displaced.
He just tipped his brittle frame forward a bit over the edge of the building: that's all it took and he was plunging down, hitting the cement hurt like hell real fast and then darkness. Darkness was a place to stay after all, a home all his own. Home sweet home. At last!
I have to pee, can’t get inside:
i have no key.
I helped, hustled & worked labor for my fee, however
he still hasn’t given me a key.
I am no floozy or a fly in the wind friend, been intwined for like 9 or ten years now, well this might cause us to end.
I have no security to hold, I wasn’t even loved enough to be sure i wasn’t shivering out in the cold.
I payed my share, helped him get his half too. Now he shoves me down, saying I don’t get a key, he doesn’t know how he “feels about me.”
How hurtful that is, truly unfair, I assumed we were a team at least a solid pair.
He doesn’t worry if i’m safe or not, doesn’t appreciate how I prepare our comfy cot, how I cook up a meal in a jiffy on the spot. How I steam lobsters legs that i hate: in my favorite pot.
I have no key, no matter how i cry and plea, I have to conclude he doesn’t have any respect for me.
I will not take this treatment anymore i decide, dancing and glaring at the door, i hop up n down: needing to pee, screw him and his key!
who says u.
who says you get to hurt me?
hit me with your hands and again, again.
Blood comes out: you continue to shout,
big man so strong so much clout.
I am so scared, whats to happen next?
You must see the terror in my eyes you gotta hear my cries see my tears hot, huge drops fallen into my thighs.
You beg me to calm and i don't know how to: you are the victim like you always are, look it what my mouth do.
Let us talk about what is fair, I should have a key if I pay rent there, instead you would rather hurt me, I hate you now at this moment for sure, i hope you can see.
I must love myself cause you cant love me possibly:
you'd rather hurt and low life me.
I'd never do these cunning things to you: you will I see.
Never apologizing or even taking the collar.
You always blaming me, a narcissist some would say.
Today i look at my bruised face, sore teeth what a disgrace: i shudder real hard.
Nothing left for us, so i began to plan my real life escape. Save my face my beauty and my grace. Who says you get to hurt me?
Am I Special?
And to whom would that be?
Am I special loved a priority?
My kids don't call me, my guy he barely notices me; if any at all.
My Mom has no time she has other things to do these days. She proudly isn't ashamed to say.
My siblings 3 in all really don't care.
I don't even look at them the same anymore.
Still I've been hoping that they'd call.
Am I special?
A piece of someone's day?
Part of a puzzle they couldn't live without?
Am I special enough to be hugged, cooked for, understood?
Am I special and to whom would that be?
Monday through Thursday I'm only special to me.
Even that's become hard for me to see, to find the worth I expect for others to find within me
Am I not worthy of love and protection?
Not even a simple apology or a natural show of affection.
A sparkle in the eye, maybe or even a few words spoken out loud.
Am I special to anyone at all?
I'm trying hard to see, to feel that warm special feeling I'd pay a hefty fee.
I'm seeking that warm feeling one gets when you know that someone cares.
But I keep ending up vacant minded my mouth parted wide; absolutely terrified. Nope.
Am I not special enough for anyone?
Am I special? If I am then to who would that be?
The Other Women
I ran my fingers down his shoulder blades, his shoulders were so strong i thought.
I had to touch him to see for sure that I could.
i wrapped my long, bare golden legs around his fine ass! I peeked down at my toenails, cute my toenails were painted teal the polish was called Teal So Good #3.
His whole being made me melt every time he came in to my vision. Bless my eyes this man was my type.
He had the right formula to get my juices flowing to keep my body heat ablaze. i wouldn't change him or his boyish charm.
He held the antidote to compel most feminine response's. The ladies he could really wrangle up, a bolt of jealousy coursed through my belly, quickly with electricity riding the bolt. I shook the emotion and began rubbing his sexy, well maintained coco bald head. He made me feel so seductive. So sultry even. In the bedroom, out the bedroom.
He was full of brilliant and interesting everything. I was impressed by his motivation, I was in love.
I wasn't the only women though, the mother. His Mother loved him no matter what. Yes she was the winner and the other women. The maker of my guy, the incubator for this man. A man with a lovers penis, a work of pure art, Thanks lady! Good job.
His mom was to dependent, very invasive too. She sucked up my mans feelings, worries. They were each others companions to family gatherings and festivals. She was his confidant. She played at the guilt he undoubtedly had. His years as a teenager and young adult were offensive,dangerous and law breaking. That kind of behavior became normal for him. She remembered his boy hood to still be stressful. His bashful light demeanor and charms seemed to be reserved for her, and she took them. Her "oh you have-to's, or “i’ll lose it all"s" were weaved into his brain like silk. Their late night phone calls the text messages the emails. The intimate banter they spoke in. Drove me mad. Her and him even lived together.
The man i had just finished screwing, was up dressing quickly, his mother had called needing his car again.
I’d taken good care of his natural need’s the pleasures of his loins. She however was the one whom he confided in. Ran to. Mother was his rock, she was.
Three is a crowd, I was the awkward third wheel. I should sue his ass in court my claim would include his overbearing mom. The women he described at the start of our relationship as a non wholesome kind a no meal type. Never mind her lowly parenting skills. She had stood by him hadn't she?
i couldn’t get him whole. He gave all his efforts and manly attributes to help and provide what his mom needed or wanted at all times. Never any driven honor to aid me, never any qualms to support me,he held no apology for me, he said I was bizarre, that i had a mom complex. She was the boss the winner always would be. Now he had gained the empathy to re pay her for his existence his Malay. He did any and everything she summoned, she summoned a lot.
He was a fool, i would often wonder why he couldn't pass on some of her many duties to his two younger brothers but he didn't. No. Had to be him.
He grabbed the keys, grabbed his bag and started towards the door, slowing down and turning he half heartedly kissed me. With tears forming in my eyes I lifted my arm to wave goodbye. He whole heartedly got in to his car and gleefully drove to abide his mom. Finally my tears fell, warm and large. Matching my disappointment of falling in love with a mama's boy.
My face is burning, flushed from my brows all the way down to my neck. I can feel the sweat began to puddle underneath my earlobes. HOT! I'm sure I couldn't get any meaner, louder, pure contumacious. I hiss words quietly to the room, "I can't flipping believe this" or "this lousy louse has gotten some nerve." No one hears me or bothers to respond, I'm HOT! All alone, anger and I, I can't stand my tone, I feel a spin coming on, so HOT! So over the edge, how could I let someones carelessness get me so blazed up? I must cool down, breath 1,2,3, let the steam go. Its better this way, I'm productive when I'm cool, being angry, moody and on fire isn't worth it isn't the healthy way. So I wipe the droplets of salty water that's rolling down my face. Swipe the heat away and stand up tall, I'm ok now cool cooled down. I'm learning to manage my emotions. Yeah, I am no longer HOT!