Leaves Falling in the Summer Sun
Starting from the rotten apple, New York, my gorgeous and wondrous city, Midtown, the roots to an ever changing tree which gains wisdom with each passing season, seemingly old, and only possessing 16 rings beneath beautiful and impenetrable golden brown bark. Raised and loved by a perfect white mother and perfect black father, I like a chameleon, can transform depending upon my surroundings, only not in color, but state of mind, physical mannerisms, rhythms and patterns of speech. I share this ability with all my friends whose ancestors hail from the sunny desert-covered motherland, and many of those who I know not. The need for this so called ability educates me of our society's standards. I have lived many lives, known the fears of whites, faced the struggle of blacks, searched for who I am between it all, have gone from one to the other and retreated back to my unique middle ground from which I play the role of the observer. I have so much to say, so much that I can't figure out what shall come first. So many leaves to give, but is it not the correct season? Might I need more rings before I can extol unto others my leaves of wisdom, or is the world living in the summertime, and not yet ready for a change of season?
Oppression, discrimination, and black on black crime, we face in this race against time. Is there but one identity projected unto us all? Black, the color of the hands reaching upwards towards the heavens in vain. Some more than persistent but kept down by the system, others lacking motivation or drive as a result of the exploits of the system, which we have come to know as laziness. Then this life, here is what my people have come to know in today's world, hardships on hardships. I tell them rise, rise, brothers and sisters rise, but my words fall upon deaf ears. We are one, I tell them, I tell them look with in and pull out those ugly demons, hate and anger. You must not forget to live--Come alive, within and open your soul to me, for I have your long awaited answers. I see them drop the dice and come to their feet on the doorsteps of their homes, I see them drop the basketball and look towards me. I see them stand as they leave the captain's chair, the director's chair, the head trader's desk and the broadcast booth, as all eyes focus upon my soul. Come one, come all, I tell them, as I see right foot, then left foot, then right again, leave the ground to approach me. But soon, their motion stops and I see something is impeding their progress. And I notice
the light blinds them. And they are not alone, for I too am blinded.
Jarret Sims is a biracial (African American and white/Jewish) high school student at the Riverdale Country School where he is senior class Vice President and captain of the varsity basketball team. His interests include writing poetry, basketball, golf and the stock market. In college Jarett plans to major in business or communications.
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