after tim seibles
it just so happens that i am hiding
weapons in my hair, just like the blonde
TSA lady expected. when she stuck her rubber
glove fingers in the thicket, a poem
jumped out and bit off her eyelashes.
somebody said i am too quiet for my own good.
in high school, America taught me not to speak
at lunch unless i had seen the latest episode
of The Simpsons. this is why i was confused
when the boy at the party stuck his pink fingers
in my hair and yelled Marge!
there are many reasons why black girls’
hair attracts white folk fingers:
1. i am not sure what
2. they are but i am sure
3. there must be A LOT OF THEM
in high school white girls watched wide-eyed
as i combed my hair in the bathroom mirror.
4. “it looks so fluffy and
5. when you poke it
6. it bounces back into place!”
in third grade boys in my class amused themselves
by throwing pencils and watching them stick in my hair
like a pushpin holder. i laughed with them.
it just so happens it’s not always easy
to explain the difference between touch
& trespass. why the elderly black man
on my scalp wants all these teenage fingers
off his lawn. why the security software at O'Hare
always suspects bombs hidden in my kitchen.
yes Mary Beth! my fro is big enough to conceal
a switchblade, a small beaker of tear gas, nunchakus
and several meat cleavers. i am holding up the queue
with my colossal beehive halo. all the white girls’ chins
are dropped and drooling spit across the floor. they are awed
and unprepared. their Barbie Dolls were blonde and forgot to warn them