A chick on a board. Rise, drop, hot wheels singin’, the wind in her hair. Ready for Scarecrow man – break on your board, slide under his skinny arm. Calls her Sugar, wants her sugar, just like Uncle Boris. Not about to get it. Pump, pump, glide down Center Street. Trash day on Maple. Keds nailed to the board, still light as air. Kickflip over the tipped barrel. Knew she could. Pump, pump, glide.
Home now, late again. Pop the board. Tail a little scuffed. Too much ridin’, maybe. Uncle Boris cussin’ again.
“Damn, Maya, where you been? Makin’ me late for work. You’ll pay for it. Get to cleanin’ that mess in the yard. Gonna get rid a that damn dog of yours.”
Tryin’ to hold her; tryin’ to keep her; tryin’ to trash her. But she’s the uncaged bird that knows how to fly. Her wings aren’t clipped and her feet aren’t tied, and her board does the singing.
Listenin’ to Latrice outside Bungalow 2. “Girl, you look bad. That old man got his hands on you again, coppin’ a feel. He never gonna quit, you know till he gets what he wants.”
“Uh, huh. All there is. And Bosco.”
“And that’s just the beginnin’. Then he’ll be at you every day. You come stay with me and Momma. Say goodbye to that ol’ pervert.”
“Lock my door, can’t get at me. Keep Bosco in there, too. Don’t want to mess with Bosco.”
“Cookin’ and cleanin’ for him. You aint no slave, no pussy woman. Damn, girl, you aint cooperatin’ surely?”
Rides her board down Center Street, swings ‘round Scarecrow man. She’s the wild rider jumpin’ the black clouds all about her. She’s Earth Daughter, a fragrance in the wind. She’s like a night without stars, dreaming heavy dreams, waking to a day still dark with Uncle Boris. But there are things he doesn’t know. Her heart is deep with song, her mind filled with freedom. She is a rainbow that can’t be clouded up. She is the hidden star that keeps shining.
And she has a board that sings her songs.