I have on my yellow pants today.
Mustard yellow purchased at a thrift store
so that I could play the part of a girl from the 90′s.
And in the 90′s there was a girl with yellow pants,
Mustard yellow pants and perfect shining hair
That cradled her smooth complected chin like it was God’s hands
cupping his most favorite creation ever.
She didn’t just have yellow,
she had red and navy blue and probably green
because those were the days where color was celebrated
like those old Benetton adds with the faces lined up
telling us different was okay.
But different never felt okay in the 90′s.
So I tried to shove these hips,
these hips I was told one day in the computer lab
were good birthin’ hips,
I tried to shove them into yellow,
And I tried to get my hair to be smooth
because I wanted to be the most perfect creation
cupped in the hands of a God who wouldn’t ask me to be
less beautiful than I was.
I gambeled it all on a pair of yellow
mustard yellow pants,
and I walked down the halls and felt
like a giant crayon,
my thighs rubbing raw against the seams of a perfection
that wouldn’t hold me.
I thought the pants had betrayed me.
I thought God was asking me to do penance for the yellow,
that had become my complete and utter focus.
I wanted the attention only smooth hair could win me,
so then with all eyes faced towards me,
I could show them how absolutely empty
is a life
that trusts in yellow,
mustard yellow to pave the way.
She was Dorothy. She was always Dorothy.
I was the witch, the one longing for striped leggings
but pressing myself into blue and white gingham
because I needed them to stop being ding dongs and realize
the wicked witch was not dead,
she was very much alive,
and not wicked at all.
Today I have on my yellow,
mustard yellow pants and every time I slip
my actual birthin’ hips into the seams
I hear a scream from my youth
a scream that says, “Thank you for redeeming
yellow, mustard yellow.
For I knew I was intoxicating enough to pull it off
if I could unlock eyes from all that perfection
and let the mess do the speaking
and the cupping
and the smoothing
In my dreams last week they saw my yellow,
and they liked the way I wore it,
the seams cupping my hips
and they said, “Don’t you dare change a thing.”