By Jourdan Lobban.


What I saw in the mirror

And what I saw on the inside

For a long time

Did not match

In any way


In the mirror

Was a girl

With reddish brown skin

Eyes so dark,

Almost black,

And hair that was too gentle to be coarse

Yet too strong to be fine.


On the inside

There was a girl

With clear oceanic eyes

Golden hair

And skin paler than a sheet of paper


And in saying this

I know there is a sense of confusion

And anthology of agony

That comes with such a truth.


That girl

On the inside

Was not always there

But she grew

With every history lesson

Tv show

And movie

That taught me to want her hair

Her style

Her life

Her everything

She grew with each lesson

That taught me to love her

More than myself.


She was more refined

And in control.  


But when it came to the real me

She was lost

In the fog

Of my early memory


Time passed

I become older

More conscious

And aware

I learned

So much

That it becomes overwhelming.


The lost culture

And legacy

Of my ancestors

Each triumph

Each hurt

Each birth

Made my esteem

Grow in worth

I saw doctors



Video stars



Who fought back

Took what they deserved

And didn’t stop for permission

I saw women

And little girls

With my hair

My skin

And instead of feeling imprisoned

They felt liberated


Ferociously strong

And woken up

From the sleep of lies

And unnatural hate


The more I saw these girls

The real me took more steps

Outside the fog

And formed

Before my unseen eyes

Her hair was glowing

All long


And ready

Cascading upon her shoulders

Brown spots freckling her honey combed skin

Just a bit expertly rubricated in the right places

I saw her mouth

Lips full

And pink



Not to mention lethal

When needed

I saw her hands


And mighty

Thighs thick

Which can kick

Her way out of anything

And her eyes

I saw her eyes

So dark

An entire system of universes

Existed underneath them

Waiting for discovery

Along with cultivation

They were black

And they held the cosmos

Within their depths.


And that other girl

The one the world wanted me to be


With a trail to be followed

Yet with each passing day

Little by little

Is erased

I lose interest in making my home like hers

And following her every action

I yearn to hold the girl I had lost for so long

Make her comfortable

A home she assuredly deserves

Inside of me


What makes me so glad

Even on less than pleasant mornings

Is that when I look in the mirror

The girl I see in the flesh

Matches the girl I see

In the spirit.


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