Sweet 16 Revelation
Like ten kernels of corn, amongst 300,
We huddled together at Jeff’s sweet 16 party
Shocked, isolated, in the minority
Skin glowing white under strobe party lights
Music pounded, bass insistently calling
Come to the dance floor NOW!
Unfamiliar as the smallest part, singled out
Of the swirling, spinning, joyful crowd
Colorful, black white brown, aware, alone
No words, just my skin speaking a language I never knew
The birthday boy’s black hand reached into the pale huddle
For my white hand, grateful, spun playfully into the dance
I grew up in a homogeneous, mostly white, world, my fishbowl. It never made sense to me that everybody would be just like me and, by choice, in my teens, began to make new friends from different backgrounds. This was my first ever experience of being noticeable because of my skin. My life got richer on this day.