They Said I Had Bad Hair

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By: Suyent Rodriguez 

Me dijeron que tenia pelo bueno

Because it flowed in the wind

…when it was relaxed

“You can brush her hair all you want

but it will curl up eventually”

Mami’s coworkers said

When I was a baby she loved my hair because it was straight and soft

Little did she know,

It would in fact curl up

When I was old enough to hold my arm up

my dad’s hair was the first thing I reached for.

And his curls I would twirl on my fingers

All day long

But I never played with my mom’s hair

Little did we know,

I internalized the message

of a beauty standard that isn’t our own

Our Afrikan ancestors passed our melanin on to us,

Along with a hair that is so so good

So I let it grow,

And now your crown doesn’t fit

And your beauty standards don’t fit

But I fit my own

Now that my hair isn’t relaxed

All of the sudden it isn’t that good

Man listen…

My hair is so so good

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So good it doesn’t care about gravity

So good it has a mind of its own

So good it’s too big to handle

So good it breaks comb

So good it offends you by just being

So good it angers you when I sit on the first row of class

So I let it grow,

And now your crown doesn’t fit

And your beauty standards don’t fit

But I fit my own

My hair so so good

you taught me to hate it…

Because you couldn’t have it

Because it wasn’t like yours

Because it is mine

And for a second

you had me believing I had bad hair

Man, my hair is so so good people wanna touch it

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But this ain’t a human zoo

MC Hammer, “can’t touch this”

My hair is so so good people wanna know what I do to it

Baby, I put water on it,

Water

My hair so so strong it is uncomforting

So you label it as bad

Because it’s so big it doesn’t fit in your box of European beauty standards

Because it’s existence defies your mind

Because you couldn’t phantom it

Because it’s a rebel

Because its not obedient like you want it to be

So I let it grow,

And now your crown doesn’t fit

And your beauty standards don’t fit

But I fit my own

Never have ever met a hair so so strong

Stronger than gravity

Stronger than my mind

Stronger than me

Stronger than combs

So strong it’s defiance offends you

So I let it grow,

And now your crown doesn’t fit

And your beauty standards don’t fit

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But I fit my own

Mami, stop telling your nina that her pelo es malo

¿Pelo malo por qué?

¿Porque no lo puedes peinar?

¿Porque no lo puedes controlar?

¿Porque es tan fuerte que va contra la gravidad?

If I’m not mistaken those are all good qualities

You always told me:

“No dejes que nadie te controle”

“Tienes que ser fuerte”

So now my hair is bad because it took consejos?

So really, what is bad hair?

So I let it grow,

And now your crown doesn’t fit

And your beauty standards don’t fit

But I fit my own

They called my pasas duras,

Si. Son tan duras como yo.

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 Suyent Rodriguez 

Afro-Latina Poet 

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I was born in La Havana, Cuba and came to the United States when I was nine years old.I have lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico ever since.

I’m majoring in Psychology and Africana-Studies at the University of New Mexico and I am a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. I identify as a black Latina, and love bringing attention to Afro-Latin@s in everything that I do. 

I have always relaxed my hair. I tried to go natural over three years ago, but some people that were very close to me made it difficult for me so I gave up soon after. I begun to transition for a second time a year ago, and did the big chop March 18th, 2016.

I surrounded myself with people that supported this journey, and this made it much easier for me. Ever since then it’s been a journey to self-love, and acceptance.

Sometimes I struggle, but most days I love my decision and the message I stand for, all hair is beautiful. 

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One Comment Add yours

  1. priceless21 says:

    Reblogged this on Forever Black Effusion.

    Like

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