black tan and rainbows

I went down to the ice cream man

he was black

i am tan*

*a version of white but that would somehow give me less credibility today bc of riots, fires, protests…

we waited our turn

while she waited too

a sweet little black girl

maybe three or two

her daddy worked hard to board up their shop

while her uncle bought her a slushee pop

Black Lives Matter is what he wrote

on the plywood boards

his black heart full of hope

she slurped her slurpee

with her pigtails in

her shining white teeth

her beautiful black skin

my tan skin was next in the line

at the ice cream stand

with the black man behind

two chocolate chip mint cones

in this world full of hate

if we all had green skin

then how would we rate each other

he handed me the cones

for basically free

and with a kindness in his eyes

he looked at me…

he in his black skin

i in my white

he did me a kindness

in that moment that night

i looked at him

we all looked at her

a shining little black girl

in a world full of hurt

we said good luck

as we all felt grim

preparing for a war

wondering who would win

but there she was

with her slurpee pop

in her rainbow jelly sandals

and her piggy tails on top

i read the words on the walls

as we drove away

“fuck the pigs” written

as far as i could see

under the bridge in big letters

the words “I CAN’T BREATHE”

….may George Floyd rest in eternal peace…

with tears in my eyes

i still saw her face

eating her slurpee

at the ice cream place

her light is the answer

the future

the way

to get through these times

we are facing today

take my hand brother

sister let’s pray

step by step

we’ll get through this day.

Ruby Rose xx

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