Tastes like iron, tastes like blood. Tastes like metal and missiles, what they’ve done. I’ve clad my heart in many coats: hope and impulse, fervor, love; but hate has never found a place, until right now, in the closet of my house. Doesn’t matter, I’m a natural. Heart rush, heat rush, mind ice—I can hate with the best of them, close my eyes, chant with the rest of them. But. For me, not so simple. Reading the news, the beatings, the short fuse, the wreckage—how do I choose? Do I side with my mother’s race or my father’s face? Or which is right: my mother’s gender or my father’s strength? White or black, wolf or cat. Which is heaviest—I don’t know—privilege and hate, or oppression and hate? Try tallying the wrongs on your two bare hands. If you can. Cross multiply, cancel the hate, and I’m down on my knees, face to face with the history of the human race, all wrapped up in the sinews and skin of my light brown body, full of hate.
History will remember, raw and tender, while America bled and her heart fought her head. I am woman, child of man. White is my tribe, black is my clan. And hate is a coat of holes: it lights my fire but keeps me cold.
❝ I have decided to stick to love… Hate is too great a burden to bear. ❞
— Martin Luther King Jr.