Microaggressions at the Market

Some may say, “Don’t worry about it. You were merely being friendly.” But the truth is I felt the need to protect him with my whiteness. It is uncomfortable to accept the harm my whiteness has done. I want to shirk my guilt by saying I shouldn’t be blamed for something I didn’t ask for. I mean really the tentacles of systemic racism were here long before I was born. I didn’t ask for the entitlements I’ve benefited from and I certainly haven’t been racist. Have I?

Love Letter to Nassau

Dear Nassau, Thank you for your Junkanoo drums vibrating deep into my bones. For Straw Market bartering, beaded braids, drunken tourists and cruise ships that line your harbor. Does it bother you they rarely ask to see all of you? Thank you for people that work hard but laugh harder whose words flow in easy…

My Lap

Tonight my daughter crawled into my lap.  I could tell something was bothering her, but I’d learned that prying often led to her withdrawing like a turtle deep into a protective shell where I could not reach her.  But tonight when the house was silent and dark she crawled into my lap. She is nineteen…

Waiting for the Grown Ups

I rarely question the value of teaching.  It’s something I have devoted my life to.  Teaching hasn’t made me rich, because our society values money over kindness and power over people.  I know this.  I had merely forgotten.  I guess I should be thankful I have been reminded. If you are happy with this past…

My Proper Raincoat

My raincoat makes a swishing sound when sliding it over my arms and onto my shoulders.  Each time I put it on some part of me whispers, “Thank you.” I have lived in rainy Washington over thirty years and this is my first proper raincoat.  I’ve had second hand, make-do coats faded in color.   I’ve…