Sur le Trône Act1, T Fleur by Saidou Dicko (IG: saidou_dicko)
. Dontay Givens is a student at Wheaton College. His poems have appeared in The Pub, Kodon and Sub-Creation.
A POEM WHERE I USE THE N WORD (NIGGA SKIN CASTLE)
after Kerry James Marshall’s Many Mansions
Who conjured up your nigga skin castle? Skinned you blue with inferno grey brick before stuffing you in the ground. You be the flower in the bouquet they used when they first cut the ribbon. A burning pink garden kissed you with peach lips. Who caressed your blue-Black skin as skyscrapers burned red lines outside of your cherry red moat? Our castle scares away pale self-proclaimed gods—it be the Black heads we set high with pikes, the screaming brown bodies we impaled alive. We be the true descendants of Ham. This Black skin be the curse we inherited like our fathers and our fathers’ fathers—so all turn away, no colonizer shall tread on our Garden of Rose. We be, always in our Sunday’s best, even when burned at stake, hung from tree, shot in back—imperialism be the lynch mob haunting the outside of our castle, pitch forks and flaming wood; a re-gentrification of all that once burned Black. We be grotesque monsters,
gently touching flowers scorched by hatred. We be the city set on the hill, a city where my mother has many mansions. This be the city where Frankenstein be welcome, the moat where the Creature of the Black Lagoon swims freely,
and a nigga skin castle be at the center of it all.