By Alyssa Fowler
A poem that takes a new view on The Table (a common standard for minorities to strive for).
Wide, long, slab of oakwood
Glossy like it’s been wiped by artificial pine spray
Long Standing legs are coated in splinters along the base
This celestial being spans from East to West, disappearing into the blue light
It sits loftily upon the clouds
Close enough to see, but just a bit too out of reach
Who can maneuver through the jungle vines and grime of the soiled white and blue stripes
Who can touch the tip of the white light, pure, without any evil intent, the opposite of black
Is held within this sphere
The table, The table
Pull up a seat to the table
Hold onto the table
For they will try to knock you off
The table, The table
Who is invited to the table?
When the table is too low for our toppling knees
The table, Oh table
Please accept me, Oh table
Please revere and adore me as I have done to you for so long
Table, oh table
You are the only table
If you do not validate me, then I will just be another qualified candidate, who was not enough for the table
The table is often thought of as out of reach
Why do we desire to fit within a world that does not want us?
The table lies along a path of rubies and gold but is certainly not necessary when a stick can carve its way through the mud
Table, I don’t need you
I can walk alone
I do not aspire to chase you so high that I lose my wits and become another victim of …
I was in a meeting with other young women when we were watching a Ted Talk by Lilly Singh who was discussing gender equality. After watching that video and listening to my partners’ views about the table, inspiration struck. While in the meeting I quickly pulled out my notes app and free wrote, creating this poem.
Alyssa is a 16-year-old native New Yorker who’s interested in law, politics and history, with an overwhelming love for writing. Growing up in a big family, she’s had many influences that have given inspiration to her colorful characters as well as interesting life experiences that guide the tone of her work. She hopes to create pieces that inspire, comfort and warm the hearts of her readers.