Blackface

What a sad, sad day it will be
for the millennial Uncle Tom’s
of our generation. The Stacey Dash’s,
Ben Carson’s, Omarosa’s, and Azealia Banks’.
Modern day blackface caricatures
of themselves who, after so many
attempts at disturbingly and embarrassingly
exploiting themselves for the empty
affections of their slave master,
in hopes that he has written their
freedom in his will —
only to find out that there was
never any intent to remove their shackles.
In fact, theirs are hinged much tighter than ours.
So tight that they need not be on.
For even when you remove them,
The mind is still enslaved. Trapped in
the likeness of their distorted
image of themselves. Or rather, the image
through which massuh sees them.
Twisted and inverted and deformed perceptions
of who they are.
Who they should be.
Who their Brothers and Sisters are.
So you see, what an injustice it would
be for the ones who are present to condemn
them. It takes far more energy to hate them,
than to pity them. It takes far more
energy to rile them, than to help them —
to stand, with our arms stretched out to them.
Ready to embrace them. Ready to tend to the
maggot infested, raw flesh that sits beneath
their shackles. To stand, ready to educate
them. Ready to remove the filters that
have been placed over their eyes.
Ready to reveal to them the rich melanin
that is within them. Ready to show them how
much we’ve flourished. Ready
to show them how much slack they can get
on their chains if they just move a little to the left.
Ready to tell them that we forgive
them for what they’ve done. They didn’t
know any better. They thought they did.
They were mislead. Misguided by the
affections of their slave master.
Whispered bottomless promises in their ear.
We get it.
They’re mistaken.
And so we pity them.
And although we wait for them, we move.
We tug at our chains. We know they’re still there.
We rattle them. And we loosen their restraint.
For we know that we’re far too strong to be contained.
And we know that they have been lied to.
So we welcome them.
On that day when their slave master dies.
When the reality sets in. When their Blackness is revealed
to themselves. When we can say ‘Hello’. And they
can see us.
See themselves.
Oh, how they’ll weep,
when they see themselves.
What a sad, sad day it will be.

Photo: Untitled from the series Blackface by David Levinthal

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