Black Girl

by Breanna Brown, age 14
Black Girl Breanna goes to Bronx Preparatory Charter School. She enjoys watching TV and taking cat naps. Her favorite things include watching laughing babies and dog videos on Youtube.

“I am expected to drop out of school at sixteen due to pregnancy, and raise a baby without a father. / I am expected to live off of minimum wage with a fast food job and welfare for financial support. / Expected to live in the projects for the rest of my life until I make it out of it, but really never make out of it.”

 

My uncle told me yesterday that if I am ever afraid to do something, to just do it.

But then again he was drunk, so you can’t blame me for being confused.

I was always one to follow my arrow despite what others said.

But to be completely honest, I tend to let those things get to me, and it takes a pep talk sometimes to lead me on the right path.

As a young African-American woman, I have a lot of trouble with how the media portrays me.

Black girl, black hair, black, brown eyes, black, dark life.

I am expected to drop out of school at sixteen due to pregnancy, and raise a baby without a father.

I am expected to live off of minimum wage with a fast food job and welfare for financial support.

Expected to live in the projects for the rest of my life until I make it out of it, but really never make out of it.

As a black girl with black hair and dark eyes, I’m seen as a disappointment to society, because people automatically assume that I will go nowhere in life.

But then again, my mom always tells me life is like a box of chocolates, I’ll never know what I’m going to get.

Therefore I know that the world is in for a surprise.

I know that I will be great in the world because I always follow my own arrow, even though I need a pep talk here and there.

Despite my surroundings, I know that I will do well because of the work that I put in.

Black girl, black hair, black, brown eyes, black, dark life.

Black skin, therefore, black, bleak future.

I was always told that education is the most powerful tool, a tool used to remove, chop off, break off, tear, shred, slash, stab, yank off all the unuseful hate in the world.

Remove, chop off, break off, tear, shred, slash, stab, yank off all the prejudice, all the criticism, all things negatively enforced by my society that I am included in when things are bad and excluded from when things are well.

My mother always told me to make my bed every morning before I leave so I feel better about getting into it at night.

And while that quotation isn’t extremely helpful,

I learned to, really, live my life the best I can so when my life ends, I am satisfied.

But then again she screamed at me when she said it so I didn’t analyze it right then and there.

Even though I am a black girl, with black hair, and black, brown eyes, I will not have a black, dark life.

Despite the way you see my brown skin and brown eyes, I will not have a brown, bleak life.

 

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