On Martin Luther King Day
I was dark, the swarthy girl
had brown eyes with kindling inside them,
my hips were as round as a Spaldeen ball
we hit against the side of a wall,
for winners walked around the block
past a fire station to the deli on the corner
with a news rack and magazines of movie stars,
each stack was anchored by a chunky iron bar
so papers couldn’t assimilate into street
without anybody first reading the sports section.
Why be blonde and blue eyed, when I could be
fast and dangerous and stand on shale pavement?
But how that iron bar made me feel defeat
when I wanted to fly on my feet.