Friday, July 29, 2011

Curly, Kinky hair poem

This Poem was send to me by a beautiful curly fan page,, Enjoy...

(for my twin sister Melissa, who endured it with me)

Braids twist and tie
constrain baby naps never to be free
braids twist and tie
contain / hold in the shame
of not havin' long black silky strands
to run my fingers through.
Moños y bobby pins
twist and wrap
Please forgive me for the sin
Of not inheriting Papi's "good hair"
moños y bobby pins
twist and wrap
restrain kinky naps
dying to be free
but not the pain
of not having a long black silky mane
to run my fingers through.
Clips and ribbons
to hold back and tie
oppressing baby naps
never to be free.
Clips and ribbons
to hold back and tie
imprisoning baby naps
never to have the dignity to me.
Chemical relaxers
broken ends / broken promises
activator and cream
mixed in with bitterness
mix well.
The ritual of combing / parting / sectioning
the greasing of the scalp / the neck
the forehead / the ears
the process / and then the burning / the burning
"It hurts to be beautiful"
my mother tells me
"¡Pero mami me PICA!"
and then the running / the running to water
to salvation / to neutralizer / to broken ends
and broken promises.
Graduating from Carefree Curl
to Kitty curl / to Revlon / to super duper Fabulaxer
different boxes offering us broken ends and broken promises.
"We've come a long way since Dixie Peach."
My mother tells me as I sit at the kitchen table.
Chemical relaxers to melt away the shame
until new growth reminds us
that it is time once again
for the ritual and the fear of
scalp burns and hair loss
and the welcoming
of broken ends
and broken
promises.
Black hair is beautiful.
¡Que viva pelo libre!
¡Que viva!


Mariposa (a.k.a. María Teresa Fernández)
Translator, lol:
Moños= buns
Pero mami me PICA= Mom it burns

Que viva pelo libre!= long live to free hair
¡Que viva!= long live
Mariposa= butterfly


Mariposa was born Maria Teresa Fernandez and is an award winning Nuyorican poet from the Bronx. read more here