Not a Door Holder

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

As we walk out of Chic-Fil-A,

my sister and I hold the doors open for an older white woman and her family.

She smirks and says,

"Oh, you must be the door holders."


...we responded with fake laughter.

Instead I should've responded with,

"No, I am college student.

No, I am Duke student.


I a 12 years of uncharted territory with report cards you wouldn't think belonged to me.

I am applicant to schools you wouldn't suggest for me.

I am more complex than a first impression.

I am ascension from years of recession.

I am what you couldn't study about,

because I am what your history books couldn't contain.


I am the containment of resentment for how you treat me.

I am the containment of resentment for how y'all treat us.

Like we are the floor, and you choose whether or not to wipe your feet and keep us clean.

I am the floor.

Becoming ceiling.

Displacing every bit of privilege in between but,

that privilege doesn't realize it because I am invisible to the privileged eye.


I am picket sign.

Reminding you that things aren't like your good ole' days.

I am reminder.

That you have to make America great again.

I am great right now because I'm not chained right now.


I am Wakanda forever!

I am breaking world records.

Doing it with no inheritance. No trust fund. No hereditary template to follow after.

I am making a template for those to come after me.


I am giving you your turn to play follow the leader.

Remember to let me know how you felt being in the back.

I am front and center to take everything back the devil stole from me.

Here to collect my reparations with interest.

Add on three fifths of that for emotional distress.


I am the topic of your resume's bullet points but also,

the target at which your bullets point.

I am...leaving you shook.

You just found out that not even death will silence us.


I am built up rage from the inspiration of this poem but,

I am forgiveness by the end of it because,

I am moving forward no matter how hard you try to hold me back.


Am I a door holder? That's a stupid question.

How can I be a door holder when I'm busy opening the doors you closed off to me?"

Submitted: September 08, 2018

© Copyright 2021 kes96. All rights reserved.

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