Women Talking of Michelangelo
Monday, June 30, 2014
Paradise, Awakening (Meghan)
They shoot the white girl first.
I look for her—the white girl—
try to understand if her whiteness made her die
or if she stupidly stood in the live-fire hall
or if she’s first because she’s close.
I look for her because in Morrison’s world
I am the white girl, whether I like the girl or not.
She’s got some notion in her head
concerning the eternal rights of women.
Some. Notion. And I’m concerned because
these are my rights, but the boys before me
Why should Edna
wake from a dream where wiggled fingers
are covered with rings, where homecoming
means chocolates in pretty boxes?
The girls seethe quietly until I let them roar.
There will be time to scream.
Now is the time to listen, read.
Now is the time to stare down reflections
in this distorted funhouse while the platform
shakes the floor.
If it all falls out, we’ll have to find a way
If that white girl makes me
her human shield, if Edna plunges your head
into the bay, scrambles up your shoulders,
and tries to float on your flailing fat
we’ll have to find a way
M. Z. Z.
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