For Black Women Who Are Afraid Poem by Toi Derricotte

For Black Women Who Are Afraid

Rating: 4.3

A black woman comes up to me at break in the writing
workshop and reads me her poem, but she says she
can't read it out loud because
there's a woman in a car on her way
to work and her hair is blowing in the breeze
and, since her hair is blowing, the woman must be
white, and she shouldn't write about a white woman
whose hair is blowing, because
maybe the black poets will think she wants to be
that woman and be mad at her and say she hates herself,
and maybe they won't let her explain
that she grew up in a white neighborhood
and it's not her fault, it's just what she sees.
But she has to be so careful. I tell her to write
the poem about being afraid to write,
and we stand for a long time like that,
respecting each other's silence.

Friday, January 9, 2015
Topic(s) of this poem: fear
Sandra Feldman 18 January 2015

Prose with a touch of poetry? Could we perhaps call it poetic-prose? In any case, pleasing.

1 3 Reply
Thomas Vaughan Jones 11 May 2016

A simple story, written in basic text, with bad punctuation to disguise prose from poetry. Where is the magnificent, mellifluous tone, the higher language commanded by the poetic muse.

0 4 Reply
??????? 02 November 2021

ֆʊֆֆʏ ɮǟӄǟ

0 0 Reply
????? ?a?a 02 November 2021

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??????? 02 November 2021


0 0 Reply
Mugnus 02 November 2021


1 0 Reply
Gabe itch 15 October 2020

Interesting read

0 0 Reply
Ratnakar Mandlik 12 March 2019

A thought provoking poem based on social stigmas and complexes nurtured on that account.

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Toi Derricotte

Toi Derricotte

Hamtramck, Michigan
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