I can’t wrap my head around this feeling
so maybe I’m just trippin and maybe it doesn’t matter
but today I don’t feel free.
I’m making your coffee and I’m hyper aware that there is history in this transaction.
I know you won’t be surprised to see me on this end.
Another brown skinned girl serving you. Taking your orders.
My skin crawls when I linger too long on that thought.
I know I wasn’t made for this. I’m not here for this.
I did this to be cool. you know it’s all the rage to be a barista.
And if I didn’t think you were a racista hijo de puta.
Then that rage wouldn’t sit heavy within me.
Then again, I need the money. So enjoy your latte and have a great day. I smile.
You walk away.
Ask where the napkins are and shuffle on.
My mother taught me that everyone deserves to be acknowledged.
Those moments shared between people, that is where humanity begins.
A smile across my lips directed towards you is an act of love.
I thought, in this way I could reach you! but...
You gazed stone faced right through me. The silence I’ve tried to fight is strengthened.
It wins again.
Yet silence is a double edged sword. It is what saved my father’s life when he was dealing with that cop who slammed his body on top of the hood of the car, my mother not far. She watched.
Silent, as well.
But that silence will haunt you.
Cause you couldn’t do nothing and you couldn’t fight back. And people will tell you, you did the right thing because the only thing you could do is be compliant and submissive.
And that rage that ate at you, tearing you apart and left to rot within… that is the human condition… for some of us.