Regal Plight

“Mr. and Mrs. Grandberry, she’s already reading and only five,”

“Way to go Kay, you’re so smart, the smartest girl alive.”

“Ashley you’ve read five books today, your peers only two,”

“Don’t be boastful, that isn’t the polite thing to do.”

“Ashley what’s wrong, did you have fun today?”

“No mommy, I don’t like feeling this way.”

“I read five books, she only read a stupid two,

“It’s not fair, I wanted to help with the book fair too.”

“I got it Sadie, I’ll talk to her, leave it to me,”

“You’re six years old now, it’s time I make you see.”

See, what, what is Papi talking about now?

“You’re different than others, I’ll show you how.

“What do you see when you look, look here,”

I don’t understand Papi, please be clear.

“You see you are smart, you’re my ashcake”,

“But this information is for your own sake.”

“Smart, but you’ll grow into a black woman,

“You’ll carry the brunt of humanity, the brunt of man.”

“I have to work twice as hard to even get by,”

“You’ll have to work thrice as hard, here’s why.

“We live in a world where equality is always a fight,”

“You heard me, from now you’ll be trying to get that right.”

“See that girl is perceived as great just because she’s white,”

“I know baby, I know it’s simply not right.”

“I’m not giving you an excuse, that is not my intent,”

“Trust me this lesson will become your heaven sent.”

“So you stay the course, pray and always work hard,”

“I’m giving you the game, not a race card.”

“Alright, I got it, I’ll do as you say,”

“Ill make a way even when there is no way.”

“Grandpa says that’s what he did after World War II,”

“Thanks for telling me what I must do.”

“Ashley, you’re so smart, but watch that mouth,”

“Wow! Such worldliness from a girl from the South.”

“You’re so pretty, very pretty for such dark skin,”

“Exactly where did you got to school again?”

“Did you do well, among people like that?”

“What exactly do you mean by “people like that?”

“I mean it should’ve been difficult, very hard for you,”

“No…. My Papi taught me what I had to do.”

“Ashley you’re so strong, but dial it back some, “

“Don’t be so serious, learn to have fun.”

“Wow girl you wore that, dancing in the streets,”

“A true lady wouldn’t do such, they’d be more discreet.”

“Hey baby, I love just how popping you are,”

“But you’re bougie baby, your lifestyle, attitude so far.”

“Why can’t we kick it, just because I make less?”

“Naw, it’s because I don’t settle for mess.”

“Why aren’t you married yet, you’re getting old,”

“Because I refuse to settle, as I was simply told.”

“Papi told me I had to be thrice as expected,”

“And because of such, settling isn’t respected.”

“So yes I am strong, because I know when to be weak,”

“Yes, I exude intelligence whenever I speak.”

“My niece should be degreed, because I have two.”

“And on my way to three like I must do.”

“White America sees me as a broodmare, whenever I walk by,”

“And pass judgment on me before I even say hi.”

“Refuge doesn’t even exist from my fellow black men,”

“They rate me on my hair, my shape and even my skin.”

“You see my refuge is only in my abilities,

“Because with them I created beautiful possibilities.”

“I know all aren’t the same, I believe some are true,”

“Regardless, I know just what I must do.”

“Most will judge me, good, bad, it matters none,”

“Because they can’t take away the work that I’ve done.”

“So yes, I represent Nubian strength, education too,”

“Southern twang, African love, pride of my hue.”

“Perceived as bougie, because my standards are high,”

“And I refuse to let life’s adventures pass me by.”

“I’ll keep thriving and shining, as you should aspire to,”

“Regardless of the strife, I know just what to do.”

SMOOCHES

To my dear sweet friend EJ, I miss you old boy. Today I texted with KeKe, Erikis made the honor roll, I know you are so proud. I am too. I’ll see her tomorrow at the fair and give her a present and remind her that although the black woman’s plight is heavy she can wear the load as well as the crown that you gave her as her father. Keep watching over her and leading the way. Keep an eye out for me too… my crown is still steady but sometimes my regal gown is stained with tears because things are hard although I refuse to give up.

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