This Side of My Skin

is honeycombs and cocoa butter

a delightful mixture of everything right

next to anyone who dares to come close

is soft, fresh picked cotton straight

from my ancestors’ fingertips

 

it’s rough

the life

of a black boy deprived of a real chance

consistent, determined, resilient

you never have to ask about my strength

next time you see

 

this side of my skin you’ll find honesty

raw, unfiltered, hard-up, broken, disappointed

humble, vulnerable

the type that scares even me

but attracts others

the kind that seeks out fallacies to suffocate its very being

until it reaches the core

 

you’ll find a heart full of every good thing

newfound, passionate, “happy” – fully, complete

adorning steadfastness as if its my last breath

the kind that takes no prisoners

because it wasn’t meant for them anyway

 

this side of my skin

is worn but won, tired but trusted

its truth beneath these pores only a few

will want

light in me

not physically, don’t let the dark skin foul you

I have a light that shines brighter than any sunburn

could offer

and it illuminates the darkest places, hidden secrets

chases down unsolicited thoughts of less than

 

this side of my skin

you’ll find laughter

from a girl who’s laugh has been silenced

great in its own right, free from formality

new – branded from years of zipped lips

smile stomped and beat out

drug then dumped

extinguished by naysayers and naught bringers

mockery. deep, unkempt, false

 

this side of my skin

you’ll find good times – pure, unadulterated fun

who doesn’t ask permission to experience life in abundance

every emotion, bottled but now released, relished, relinquished

ablaze and alive.

 

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