Smith 1 Jolisa Smith February 2, 2011

Ms. Scapatici

English Memoir

Good Morning Jo

This morning I awakened to the sound of my mother screaming deafeningly into the phone at my sister. During that moment I did not know what was being discussed, but I knew she was extremely upset about something. My sister had probably done something to upset her again. I wanted to comfort mom but I was tied down by the curse called tiredness, so I continued to lay there with my eyes open staring at the dark shadows which surrounded me. I looked over to my closet where my clothes hung in misery from the clutter, and noticed the door was cracked. Oh my goodness, mom had been snooping in my closet again.

I am deathly afraid of vampires jumping out of my closet while I sleep, biting my long giraffe-like neck so I can turn into a blood-loving, nocturnal monster-of-a-human- therefore I make sure my closet door is shut tightly every night, faithfully. This fear is entirely my father’s fault, for he and his girlfriend at the time, took me to see Blade when I was six years old. I will always remember the opening scene that took place in a night-club of some sort, and then suddenly blood started pouring from the ceiling and fangs began to appear in the mouths of poorly dressed women in leather shirts and pants revealing their “perfect” mid-drifts. I am sure

It is not very uncommon for my mother and me to bicker and argue in the mornings. I feel as though the tension is due to our contrasting personalities. I lay there furious from the thought of my mother prying through my belongings. She usually yells it through the thinly layered wall that separated her room from mine. every single one admiring the gut wrenching film being projected onto a gigantic black wall. It sends burning alarms through my body when mom says it is 6 o’clock when she and I both know it is really 5:55 am. I had five more minutes to repose in the warmth of the once plush and comfortable. “Wake up Jo. I say “late” because Samantha likes to leave the house at 7 o’clock so she can find a parking space close to the building where she works. dresser and nightstand. it’s 6 o’clock”. but now springy and indented mattress of mine. while anticipating her to enter my room for the routine military-like wakeup call. Waking up every morning from dreams of one’s mother strangling her to death for being one minute “late” to school does not give reason to extend her arms to express the undying love she has for that parent. I .Smith 2 you can imagine how traumatizing it was to be the only child in a movie theater filled with adults. my mom bellows through the barricade surrounding my bed. Rolling over for what I knew would be the last time before she entered my personal chamber and lit it with the fire from her dragon esophagus. seemed like it would be the death of me. ignoring the minute detail that I do not have to be at school until 8 o’clock.

Samantha has filled an entire bucket of water and thrown it on my head because of my refusal to get out of bed. “Jo. I see my reflection and am not surprised at all by what I see. Snuggles. “Good morning Jo” I say.” She was well aware that I knew the consequence for not getting out of bed.and then at the mirror which stands on top of a purple shoe box covered in dust that appeared from LA LA Land. a mattress filled with water and the pajamas to match.Smith 3 saved the short moment of bliss for another day and slowly move towards the sun rising from the bathroom across the hall. Yes. wake up. .the one and only faithful man in my life. I look to my left at the bare lavender wall. let us begin this already miserable day. this is the last time I am going to tell you. this has happened before. then to my right at Mr.

Is thrown her way. The half-moon shaped strands of beauty . Her skin is that of a melted Milk Chocolate Hershey’s bar With the shine of a bright star In the night sky. The brown creamy casing Turns into a deep shade of red velvet When put into a heated dense atmosphere And when the indefinable word. For her appearance conflicts with that of any “wise” man’s fantasy. Resembling a halo above her oval shaped skull. “Why did God make me this way?” She’ll say. Golden And silky smooth describes JoAnne’s skin.Smith 4 Ugly Ugly. Ugly. Mid length deep rosette hair that forms a circle. The word that makes her heart race And stomach drop When used to describe the physical appearance Of the girl she sees every day in the mirror. But it seems that no “real” man will ever know.

She hides behind her glasses with the red framework So when one glances her way The only thing visible is the tinted pink glare. The Afro. Scatter And mate To form the ultimate symbol Of natural African-American beauty and pride. Love is what she needs from him. This admirable coffee coating Is a permanent blemish That corrupts the world into believing She is less than capable of pursuing Anything That can be worth Everything . That they avoid her presence.Smith 5 That form the majestic halo Intertwine. She convinces herself that it is because of her Biologically foul appearance. “Why do they hate me so?” She cries out. No sane being would dare attempt gazing In the pair of diamond studs so perfectly hidden.

Yet display more than enough potential Is beside the interests these savages appear to have. Unbelievable. Is the idea that she is worth more than He And they Say She is. The life of one human being. The viability of the driven. who obtain no license. Indefensible And all together unsanctionable. Separate but not equal is simply unjustifiable. She cannot change Because of the stain That causes all hopes to be unsustainable. Is the ignorance of those few people Who make JoAnne the girl she is. Incomprehensible. These aliens have no class And will never get past the things of which have passed.Smith 6 To someone. He doesn’t know his ass from his elbow. “Why do they judge me unfairly?” She screams with frustration .

What they do is not called hate. It is mere envy. Your stomach drop and your face turn red. They are.” The day has finally come.” .Smith 7 “You Are not the victim. They call you Ugly because they fear the beauty of your mind. “Hey Ugly. Now is the time to be strong. Your heart is worn on your sleeve And has been beaten Severely For much too long. God made you this way because He loves you. it’s time to put you to bed. Because your pigment is an honor. The purity of your soul illuminates Beyond what the human eye can see. Hold your head up high. I see no stain. And let your heart race. JoAnne.

” She’d always say “I know you don’t like me now because you are young and dumb but one day you’ll thank me for everything. I am pleading for just a little bit of oxygen so I can make it to the machine that has saved my life so many times before. didn’t cross my mind until seconds ago when I found myself in the doorway of my office gasping for air and noticing how far away my nebulizer was.” In time to call mom and say “Thank you for all you’ve done. I had spoken to Shanice on the phone about her brother..Smith 8 Laverne Mitchell “I… ca-nt. I was young at one time in my life and I . Thoughts are racing through my head.” I wish I would have done so sooner. The thought that the day I say “Thank you” to mom would never come..” In time to tell Daryl “Thank you for being my rock to lean on when the ground slipped from under my feet. Mar is such a hard headed child. It was just this afternoon that I felt perfectly healthy.” are the last syllables I am capable of forcing out of my aching chest before my surrounding co-workers turn into disfigured shadows in front of white walls and then into objects disappearing in thick black air. Brea…. even when I am not here. and I hate to admit it but he is just like his momma was. I don’t think I can make it in time.. Marquise who I call Mar Mar. instead I let time whisk by without the slightest utterance of the simple yet meaningful words of gratitude. in time to tell Shanice and Marquise “I love you and momma will always be here.

unaware that the outcome of its inhalation would be worse than ever before. This must be a dream. I can see nothing. The streets are not all of what life has to offer and I was hoping to help him realize that life… I can hardly think anymore. I am on a bumpy trail but there are police sirens. I am plummeting to the surface. I don’t want this to be goodb… Darkness. I feel as though I am up next. Seconds ago the air was strong enough to hold the weight of my short frame but the gravitational string that held my legs firm to the ground has been cut. My son is twenty-two years old and still has not grown up. not again. Is God trying to tell me something? My mouth is . however it needs to happen soon or Mar has a tough road ahead of him. you want to really take me back to this place? I can’t feel my body and I can’t move my lips. I am not floating. Am I being chased by the police? Oh boy. I know I was young and dumb but really God. I can hear Sandra’s voice yelling “Someone call 911 immediately!” I can feel the tender touch of four hands cradling my body but I no longer can identify who these people are. This black air is what I swallow. when I worked at the hospital.Smith 9 wanted to run the streets and act foolish just like all the others but then came the time to grow up. My hands are becoming limper by the second and my car keys have suffered a tragic fall from the safety of my palm. to take that catastrophic plunge into the dark hole awaiting my arrival in the back of Graceland Cemetery. There is a sharp feeling in my arm close to where I used to stick patients for their IV.

My mouth feels like sandpaper and I can’t move my lips because there is something stuffed in my mouth that runs through my throat. There are tubes everywhere and the sound of the machines alone. I am so happy to see you baby. Does anyone have some water up in this bitch? I’m thirsty as a mother fucker dammit! I really need to wake up from this dream or else I might have a heart attack . I might as well lay here and . he just tries to break my heart as often as possible.Smith 10 extremely dry. “Hey Shanice. One moment I see Shanice and then the next I don’t. Why are you crying? Sha Sha what’s going on? Can you hear me?” My eyes wander around the room in a flickering pattern. Everything is moving at an extremely quick speed and my eyes are still doing that flickering thing. I had the worst dream ever. The muscles in my eyes are weak and I can’t seem to focus on one object. this has to be real. Who would have known that I could create such a selfish and vengeful child? I am helpless and no one can save me. I see her again with a different colored scrub on and then she’s gone again. make me feel destitute. I am in the hospital. Oh my son. I was… wait a minute. No. that is unless this is another dream. but I know that this couldn’t be because the speed at which they’d be flickering would be astronomical. but no sign of Marquise. It is almost as though someone is turning the lights on and off. I can feel the buckets of water stored in the back of my eyes beginning to overflow and pour out into the open air. Daryl also has stopped by a couple of times too.

” “Ttt. I have to do this before it is too late. I am out of breath and my heart is racing. I squeeze her hand tightly and move my eyes toward her direction. No more pain or sorrow. No more broken heartedness or resentment. I force out. This is the moment. there is no way she could be here. everything will just be erased. My body is weak and my… THE END . She is walking away and I can’t see anymore. I have undug the words buried in my soul for way too long and try to set them free. holding my hand consoling me in this time of misery and despair. with the biggest smile I can make with a tube pried in between my lips. she shouldn’t be here. After all the things I’ve done and the hurtful things I’ve said. sitting beside me.Smith 11 die. Why is my mother here? I don’t deserve this. I am extremely satisfied and so is my heart but momma’s reaction was not as expected. just rest. I can feel her soft hands rubbing my arm and saying “Now don’t you go actin’ up now.thhh-thththa-thank you”.

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