Twice as Black

If they came at me tonight,
The evil champions of the night,
This will be the night of their dreams,
Their little lazy siestas will be worth it.

I am lost and at odds with my faculty,
Too many glasses of 10 cent beer
Brings this stomach to fruition,
Making the trek home an epic toil.

I do the math,
I am fit to run for a while if need be,
But if they come tonight,
I will be done for life.

Even though,
I am disabled of mind,
As it often gets on payday.
I may yet devise my utmost points of view now,
To an audience of none,
In the thick soup of nightfall,
When all the boys and rodents tumble and snore,
And wage wars in damp dreams.

It occurs to me now that I am black twice.
A specialist will listen to my beating chest and
Call out my dualism or bipolarity
Or something just as medically godless.

This verdict never fully leaves the thinker,
Black here and black there,
And then back to being faithfully just black here.

And yet,
With hell or high waters,
I can hardly be black just right,
I am ensconced with malignant faces
And old souls darker than my talent
To be black twice,
And yet not well enough,
And too black by teaspoons.

I am black as a debacle of birth,
And then black under the supremacy
of a sweet fluke.

I am Nigerian,
Or so I am told.
And soon after,
Black in America,
And between these hells,
Blacker on the footpath of life,
If that’s how life travels, that is,
By foot.

I am many sons,
I am many kinds of that black,
The kind that lingers in daylight.
Two of these would suffice for now,
For I am only a man,
And so I am black twice,
How much black can one man bear?

Now there are no perfumes in the balcony,
No mailmen asking howdy,
No strident cars,
No obituaries,
No needless dispatches,
No one smiling with excess hope,
No fair friends,
No new lovers kissing ever,
No babies with bombshell eyes,
No champions of the night.

Too bad,
This would have been
The night of their dreams.

Advertisements