We still have a number of stories to post in our contest, The Drinking Fountain. I have the stories flopped in a pile on my desk, weighted down by coffee cups and beer bottles that are no respecters of literature, and leave rings. The upside is, I can safely say that almost every story has a nice ring to it! (moan). The stories are randomly selected, nothing so civil as first-come/first served. Your submission will appear, I assure you, and I will eventually have to procure a coaster to save the veneer of my desk to prevent veneerial disease, or else launch another contest and get a new stack of entries.
Hi KYLE! Hello from Prague…hope you and the other local literati will be on hand mid June for the Fifth Annual Writers’ and Creatives’ Reunion at the hacienda of Victor Villasenor in Oceanside.
Here is Kyle’s second entry:
Let Freedom Sting.
By Kyle Katz.
In a haze of smoke and shrapnel of chocking tear gas, cries of separation, death threats that no longer feared the light. Chaos smeared on white angry faces like rouge. Bloodstains branching out on the street next to black tire treads screeching in escape away from the crime scene. Separate water fountains. One for colored…one for white. None for me.
Time wears itself around our waist like an apron of tradition. We see colors…not lack of color.
You rode on a bus; you had a dream, where the color of my mixed skin became a theme. Where the content of my character was something that was buried in concrete. A preamble of injustice on my headstone. May she rest in peace.
Those wanting to know whom you were …whom do you represent? And depending on where you live and what color your skin is or isn’t. It was a subtle question asked too many times to be a compliment. If only you knew I could read your face when it frowned with distaste. How could you mix a race?
The fog slowly lifted over time… not without casualties. The quilt of life sown together by defiance. We love who we want to love. As you feel the softness and love in my eyes. I sculpted a world with a different view.
Hazelnut brown skin, alabaster pale as white, in between honey hues of high yellow fallen over sunsets, the bluest black of natures grace, velvet chocolaty brown skin, light olive, rosy beige textures, red suntanned landscapes of indigenous tones. Shadows revealing the quiet darkness of our thoughts because we could paint a picture with depth of many colors and etchings of black and white striking the fire with truth. But even I was afraid of the truth. I didn’t have enough color or I had too much.
If you didn’t adjust your actions accordingly, you’d be found out.
You could pay for that mistake dearly if you didn’t check the correct box.
But, still, she showed up every year.
She clicked her pen and looked at me pleasingly with her official consensus clipboard. I flipped back my blonde frizzy cascade of curls and narrowed my green eyes. My light olive skin exposing my untanned white thighs in my summer shorts.
Are your parents here?
“How many in your household?”
“What’s your race?”
“Can I see the clipboard?”
She handed it to me, letting out a sigh of relief.
I marked all the of boxes and wrote. I am American, part of the Human race.
My birth certificate read Mother…Negro. Father…White. Stamped with an official gold seal. It was wrong. This was all wrong!
No one could seem to get it right.
But it didn’t matter.
Because I finally saw… with my own sight!