Good White People
Not my phrase, I swear, But my grandmother’s When someone surprised her By holding open the door Or by singing that same high C Stephanie Mills holds Near the end of “I Have Learned To Respect the Power of Love” Or by gifting her with a turkey On the 24thof December After a year of not tipping her For cleaning what they could afford Not to clean. You’ll have to forgive My grandmother with her good Hair and her good white people And her certified good slap across Your mouth. Crack the beaten door To eat or sing, but do not speak Evil. Dead bad black woman I still love, she didn’t know What we know. In America Today, anyone can turn on A TV or look out a window To see several kinds of bird In the air while each face watching Smiles and spits, cusses and sings A single anthem of blood— All is stained. She was ugly. I’m ugly. You’re ugly too. No such thing as good white people.