I highlight this particular poem for the three lines at the bottom of the second stanza which read, “I guess being colored doesn’t make me not like the same things other folks like who are other races. So will my page be colored that I write?” I am attracted to this poem for a couple of reasons including it’s highlight on the all-interacting ‘hive’ we live in where every moving part of society is connected to another in some way. This twenty-two year old colored college student writes a poem that comes out of him, but he goes into this assignment with the understanding that not only will his assignment be colored but a part of his white instructor as well. He further includes his environmental circumstances, New York and more specifically Harlem. Being the only colored student in class, his experience living in Harlem is entirely different from his fellow classmates who live in a different part of the city. However he doesn’t disregard this as a negative aspect but an accepted truth to everyday life. Every body around him is different and is faced with various opportunities/struggles, and this is what he argues makes the assignment ‘American’.
When talking about his white instructor he writes, “Sometimes perhaps you don’t want to be me. Nor do I often want to be a part of you. But we are, that’s true! As I learn from you, I guess you learn from me–” This poem beautifully highlights the positive and negative aspects of the black/white relationship in America. For this relationship to co-exist in a semi respectful and humane nature we need to embrace our history and learn what we can from experiences of others. Everybody’s difference whether black/white/asian/latino/etc.. needs to be fully embraced in order to exist as a true democracy. Theme for English B emphasizes the importance of needing to hear someone’s story before assuming a general sentiment or attributing stereotypes.