trimming the wild hairs
    my eyebrows
under the March sky

over the white sink with
mildew stains
around the hot and cold handles of
the faucet

i wonder why my father won't
call or come to visit

is it because of the color
of our ancestors' blood and bones?
      i'm willing to know more,
to dig deeper
and darker?

willing to unearth
the shame written on my grandfather's heart?

i itch myself behind the ear
and smile white gums at the mirror

under the skylight

i push and twist the silver ring
on my left hand's finger
remind my heart what it's
there for

blood and blue veins
hazel eyes
         and a thousand wars swept under
the carpet

we are Jacksons, Marlboro blues, red rusty ankles

of copper
and brass, Guinea Niggers

i sit on the edge of the bed
and listen to
         the wind thru the screen door
watch the
cat circle the rug
and bury our epithets and white history in the pages
of books
that will someday
         be rewritten.

Justin Wade Thompson was born in New Braunfels, Texas and now lives, humbly, in a trailer park, in the capital city of Austin. He has never pursued a higher education, career, or full-time job.

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