At the top of the tree is a shining star: me
I am very good at what I do
at all the various things I do
and that has never been enough.
tell me – should I still invest in life?
My country hates me – actively hates me. And this not a statement of “my truth” or a matter of perspective. It is a carefully documented historical fact that as a female and person of color, my life means so very little to this country that seeks to rid the world of me; so much so that even now, decades into “progress” and the fight for equality, I find I’m still always starting at square 1; so much so that should I protest this systematic relentless and conditioned hatred, I might be threatened with rape. Or at the very least deportation (get out of this country, they might say). Or told that there’s a “right way” to protest (that’s privilege for you: not only do they get to oppress you, they get to control the road to freedom, too. Must be nice…)
Way down in a manger, ensconced in sweet hay
Is a brown baby Jesus, who’s come but won’t stay
Are any of the things preached about him even real?
Easter is not about him; neither is Christmas.
So all this doctrine is an increasingly unpalatable feast
of half truths and full on lies.
Tell me – do I still want to be here?
I am a professional with a Master’s degree who cannot find a job; I am that teacher that the school system fought with viciously the year before adopting as standard the practices they fought me on; I am the radical in the building who got the clandestine hallway support from the veterans of the field who knew that I was right, but also believed that Institutions and Power have very little to do with who is right and who cares the most about the kids. This is education – this is politics. Play the game, they say, and you might escape the Pogrom that’s coming.
Meanwhile from the east, in the wake of a star
Three kings ride the lightening, lords of mischief and war
Working hard, being kind, being smart, being curious
Being fearless and having faith in the end cannot erase who you are:
a Negro and, worse, a woman
The game IS the pogrom that is coming. The matrix will never release you. And I’m too old to be guilted into being thankful. (What about all these good things, they say). I am thankful for them. That has nothing, less than nothing, to do with the terrible reality that is Life, the increasing down turn it’s taking and the growing feeling that this is what happens when you pass your expiration date. I think I could be less cynical if I read less…or understood less…or was actively chasing an illusion of peace, good will and love, alternately striped like the ribbons of color on a candy cane. But I spent my youth chasing after the wind. And I’m not fighting this hard for a life that I didn’t ask for in the first place.
I am not at all suicidal.
But I am noticing – it sure is taking a long time to die…