The Glistening Beauty of His Skin

In the church courtyard
after the march and protest,
we sat around a table. I
listened to the biracial,
young man speak about
his religiously and polit-
ically conservative
mother in Memphis. I
asked the young man
if his mother were black.
“Oh, no, she is white.
She had an affair with
my father when they
were very young. He
was from the wrong side
of town. They never
married and I only met
him once.” After that
he continued to tell
stories about Memphis
but I lost the gist of
his words. I found my-
self looking at his
rich, bronzed skin
and then at my reddish
white arms with blue
veins and blotchy,
age spots here and there.
I just sat there staring
at his face, remember-
ing to blink my eyes
periodically so he
would think I was
listening, but I wasn’t;
I was mesmerized by
the glistening beauty
of his skin.


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