Color Metaphor – Vera List New School Art Collection Writing Award Winner

By Justin Allen

Yellow strikes Blue     until Blue bruises green. Red
doesn’t dim or pale     with misery or fear, and Black
batters White until     White bruises black. Instead
of the abrupt truth,     America salutes the idea that
no hand holds the     brush, that no whitewashed
past pushes the action. Black invades white space
faster than the flight from the inner city where blood
mixes shades by clack or bang and Black beats Black,
becomes blacker, in the creeping glare of headlights
as white as crack. Instead of the abrupt truth, little
white lies twist black history like noosed necks and
kinky hair to blackout X-istances. But freedom, abstract
and American as Blues, allows for revision of color.