He looks wary,
The cloth around my head
I am attacking him with cotton
Made from the blood, sweat, and tears of my African brothers and sisters
Sold by the tired ladies just trying to make a living on the streets of Jackson Heights
He looks scared,
The Arabic I speak.
I am attacking him with words.
Learned from my crying mother wishing her daughter would learn her mother tongue
Forced upon me by the Saturday classes, where I was the youngest in the class
He glances over to see my phone screen
The music I listen to,
I am attacking him by being American
Playing is a bland song that charted the Top 50 last week
Put on specifically to prove I am just like him.
He shakes his head
The reading I need to finish
Thick, dense pages of difficult comprehension
Put on full display for him to see
He is scared.
Of a young teenager
Just trying to get to school
Scared of me.
On the 7 local train,
Where I have sat next to a man
Who I am scared of.
Anonymous '21 (BHSEC Queens)
Updates Every Sunday