An Open Letter To

My skin is pale, and I have no family whose flesh is otherwise,

But I would fully expect to find that I have black ancestors.


I want, so desperately,

To believe that I am descended of

Boundless, beautiful, revolutionary love,

But I will not betray those ancestors

By pretending it is so.


America, my country,

Was built by torture, rape, murder, slavery, genocide,

Violence of every possible agony.


America was born so deformed

That if every one of her current victims

Broke free at this moment,

I'd expect to find her corpse in the morning.


So many hundred thousand black women

Raped by white men,

So many hundred thousand children

Abandoned for a single drop.


The idea, that my body would somehow not bare the scars of this, seems ludicrous to me.