Private Schools

by Joasha Lemba

Private Schools had us wearing 
grey and black skirts
that we rolled just under our bottom
White knee length socks
And black church shoes
That we took off of our feet 
As soon as the 3’o clock bell rang
Ending: Exam sessions,
Torture lessons: Geography,
Mathematicks and Biology

Private Schools had funds that dug deep
In My Daddy and Mama’s pockets
Burning holes in their wallets
Just like the holes in My sistas’ and I’s over used 
Less food on the table
Cut electricity and phone lines
My Parents wanted us to have a good education,
No matter the cost.

Private Schools had White boys and White girls
Nose in the air: glorifying Blue eyes and blond hair
Skinny waists, Flat asses, and angular knees
They spent their winter vacations skiing 
Or in Cuba
While, in March, they flew to Florida
And we (My Sistas&I) were happy 
If we had enough money to pay the bills
So, Daddy could give us a 5 or 10 dollar bill
To get a snack after school
One of those big chocolate muffins 
They sold for 1.25 at the Metro…

Private schools had
Closet racism…
Rich people that didn’t know how to live
That picked on one another
And filled voids with material things
Private schools had 
Me believing that White was beauty
An’ Black was something that
Could be erased: with a thinner waist,
A thinner nose and permed hair.

Private schools had
Wannabe drug dealers 
That snuggled coke in cookies
To look Hard&Cool
An’ Quebecker girls that said that
Their black boyfriends dicks were too big
To fit into their thin pursed mouths
An’ young girls that got drunk on parties
And voted on collective nights
When they would loose their virginity at 13
An’ 150$ jeans, an’ 200$ sweaters…
Girls that gave oral between cafeteria doors
But they would ALL go home later on
And eat dinner with their parents
On China utilery and talk about their next trip
To God only knows where…

Private Schools had
Bad memories&Few of the good ones
I managed to scrape up,
While closing my eyes
And pretending that I wasn’t black,
That I did have money, and as little vision
As the rest of them.

Private Schools by Joasha Lemba

© Copyright 2005. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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