Tuesday, August 21, 2012

colors

You cannot see the beauty in it if you ignore the vision.  It is a sea of brown and black heads, the hues echo off each other like shadowy stones in a canyon at sunset.  She is in the middle of them easily a foot smaller.  From the darkest her skin is a thousand shades lighter, from the lightest, a hundred.  They call her ‘The Girl’.  From where I sit on the curb near the street well out of their way and line of sight I can hear them shout excitedly, “The Girl can do that!”  “The Girl beat you!”  “The Girl is the best!”  There is no malice in the title The Girl.  They are not taunting her or each other.  It is only an obvious fact that she is the only girl on the playground.  Seemingly less obvious to them is that she is also the only ‘white’ one there.  Under other circumstances I would not call her white but among them she is truly white.   That little absurd box ‘white’ which has fallen out of fashion on government forms because it mostly only applies to the color of the skin on the sheltered behinds of a few select caucasians, can finally be checked in the light of day. 
She turns to smile at me denoting a fact about her hair by pulling out a long ribbon of it to display for me.   She is saying ‘Have you noticed I am the only one with blonde hair here?’  I smile and nod at the splitting of hairs, yes child you are the only one with blonde hair like the only green droplet in an ocean of blue.  It means nothing to her, a funny side note she happened to catch while waiting her turn.  It means nothing to them; the beauty of seeing color free from the Emperor’s blindness and the judgments which come with pretending to be deaf & dumb.  Do not pretend too long not to see what is right in front of you or you may left truly stupid. 
The next day two boys who I know to be age 12 and 14, show up on my front porch asking if The Girl, who I know to be 8, can come play.  I explain to them she at the gymnasium until 8 but if she eats her dinner fast and there is time I will send her to play.  A half a dozen differences in race, religion, sex, gender, skin, size, and age are no match for the playground.   They are much smarter than their parents and their grandparents and their great grandparents, they know what matters and what doesn’t:  Ability, good sportsmanship, and safety in numbers.  Let the children go out to play.                   

3 comments:

  1. Misty, this is stunning. Beautiful writing, beautiful girl, beautiful thoughts, beautiful kids.

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