I’d rather burn black an’ walk in the sun
than stand in the shade all my life.
Ah, frown from under your flowery
I’ll walk in the sun if I like.
I’d rather see sunlight speckling my skin,
feel afternoon warmth seeping in to me,
lean my chin
on the wall between our classes
and look out to sea.
You’ll say it’s not good, you’ll say come in,
I’ll dream in the sun if I like.
I’d rather be blinded by blue skies and unclouded light
than never look up at all.
Freedom comes through many things –
I get mine through my eyes
and sailboat skies.
Tell me it’ll ruin my sight;
I’ll stare at the sun if I like.
And I think I’d rather have this,
Sweat-beaded skin and awkwardness,
Wings of a dragonfly flashing flame
And the sea, the sea in the distance.
I’d rather burn black than stand in the shade
I’ll dance in the sun if I like.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.