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“What Do You See” by Tamia Whiters

What Do You See?

by Tamia Whiters

You don’t know my name,
So you stare at me.
You don’t want to know my name,
I’m just a black girl.
In your office, I stand in front of you,
but I’m just a figure of clear melanin that cannot shine in front of you.

You don’t know my name,
I’m just a woman from Chicago.
The city that moves like the wind,
the city that can never win in your eyes.
That’s why I am in disguise.

You don’t want to know my name.
You can’t even look at me in my eyes.
To me, this is no surprise.
Dressed in your fancy suit and tie
and mentally secured by pieces of fabric.
Piece by piece, button by button,
A piece of clothing never gave me nothing.
Suit or no suit,
I’m just a Black girl.
You don’t want to know my name.

After staring at my resume,
You know my name, but you will never know me,
so your prejudge me.
But, I show you differently.
I show you that I can speak eloquently.
I show you that I can teach you successfully.
I show you that I am worthy.

Respect me like I respect you.
Give me eye contact,
and don’t tell me how to keep my hair in tact.
Stop with the artificial admiration
Because I am not your abomination.

Now,
You know my name.

Tenacious.
Ambitious.
Miraculous.
Innovative.
Admirable.
Now, You know my name.
And now, you see me.

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