I think about the mornings it saved me:
a purple dinosaur in the morning.
a big, yellow bird in the afternoon.
old plastic bowls full of
warm milk and colorful cereal residue.
loud weekend living rooms.
cooking pies with cold dirt and pebbles
in the white, hard plastic house with pink
shutters in the backyard. Long legs
above the thick roof of the house, arms
stretching up towards the dark and thick
orange sky with the help of the metal, squeaking
springs on the trampoline that was a compromise
for a built-in pool your mother was afraid you,
or a robber in the night, would drown
in. Black Bratz dolls in glittery heels
driving pink convertibles across the hard
carpet of a purple bedroom.
plucking skinny splinters from old benches in
quiet parks. dancing in circles
on eight wheels on polished, wooden floors.
locking the bathroom door and hopping
on the sink to take selfies in the mirror
covered in greasy fingerprints.
a fake broken mirror. a real black girl
with skin sharp like shards and
salt and black pepper in her heart.