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The Issue of Color

by Jade Laurel about a year ago in performance poetry
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from the perspective of a rainbow

The Issue of Color
Photo by Tom Barrett on Unsplash

Rainbows aren't asked their ethnicity

Nor where they're from

But where bodies are covered in skin

We are counted by color

Distinction separates and divides,

All differences counted by the human eye

I am both

The full spectrum of color,


and the complete lack of it,

the void

What place exists in between?

In the sky we admire the overlapping of colors

But here on the ground,

Where color is scattered

With so many shades,

We draw lines in between

Purity and absence,

Phenomenon and totality,

Those are the description of the colors that define me,

And yet,

they are not true colors at all

I am "black" and I am "white"

And because of this I add no label to myself or to others,

Opposite sides of the spectrum force me to see

No "color"

Why do we label by the colors that either

Burn or darken in the sun?

Why must we say:

He is white,

They are black,

Or it is because of brown,

Or she

She is both

Therefore only half,

Dividing me into two

Separated worlds,

Setting opposition within my soul

Why do humans not see how nature shows us a different way

Within the six seamless colors of a rainbow

Vibrating in harmony?

- Jade Laurel

performance poetry

About the author

Jade Laurel

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