By Mel Vee X
Sterile white hospital walls. Yet again.
Pale. Pure and perfect.
Not like me.
‘You getting help for that?’ the doctor spat
Gesturing to my chunky keloid scars
Bright pink against my brown skin
They stuck out just like me
I tried so hard to be good. To be white. To be straight. To be anything but me.
I see girls like you all the time. Spoiled rotten. Typical teenage shit.
They just didn’t get it – I had straight A’s. Played on the volleyball team. Worked part-time. Started a group for girls with low self-esteem, unironically. I was such a good girl.
They say it gets better but from where I sat how could there be a pot of gold at the end of this fucked up rainbow?
Red- Rage. I told my story over and over and over again to people who made no effort to understand me. Always thought they knew best.
Orange- my favorite colour at the time. Still is. Means I have a radiant personality.
Yellow- the colour of the bruises she left. She said she loved me. But don’t they all?
Blue- the colour of my lips when they found me and the hospital gown I wore for days
Black- I was told I was lesser. Tainted.
White- I learned I would never be pure and innocent. So why fucking bother?
To this day, I peer over the edge
And imagine it is quiet-
Imagine there is space, finally,
To hold all the queer, all the beautiful brown
All the me that is too loud, too much
But I stop myself; my work has only begun. There is always another kid –
Another Black kid
Another queer kid
Another queer Black kid
Peering over the edge too. Tonight, I want to tell them what I wish someone told me- Begin to read. Question. Think.
Stop laughing at shit you don’t find funny. Stop smiling when you’re uncomfortable.
Take the mic away from all those well-intentioned people who claim to have your best interests in mind but thought the world should hear it from them instead of you sweetheart.
Stop believing you are inferior. Stop treating your existence as an inconvenience. Your right to live trumps other people’s feelings.
They will call you a terrorist-
When you stop eating the heaping bowls of shit they keep trying to serve you.
Don’t listen to them. They were never going to share their pot of gold.
I hate to admit it, after saying all that, I think about my last words and I stop myself-
There is a kid out there like me who needs to know they are not alone.
Believe in yourself, even and especially when no one else does.
The rainbow they keep telling you about? Comes after the storm, not before.