unseen (reflecting on the passing of Penny Marshall)


growing up

i was more Laverne than Shirley

more Khadijah than Regine

wished i was more Alexis than Krystal

   i loved that she was mean

i was more Cagney than Lacey

more Jo than Blair

was more Jaleesa than Whitley

   Lord knows the girl went there

i was more Sabrina than Kelly

more Vanessa than Denise

i was more Weezie than Florence

   i’m a libra

   i keep the peace

i was more Marianne than Ginger

more Gina than Pam

was shonuff more Thelma than Willona

   i don’t give a damn damn damn

i was more Janet than Chrissy

more Dee than Shirley, too

more Coco than Lydia

more Jan than Marcia


   am i today?

i don’t see imaginings

of myself

on screen

guess i’ll have to write

a show


a middle aged

not strong

black woman

because it’s who i am


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