by Shannon Barber

I am going to need you to shut the fuck up.

I realize when you see my big tits and red lips you think the look I’m giving you over my glasses is a sex look.

It’s not.

You think the lip ring means I’m easy and freaky. You think that your patter of, “hey girl,” is going to get me good and wet. You think because I’m a Black girl, you’re going to impress me with your love of whatever you think Black is.

I start grinding my teeth when you tell me how much you adore “different Sistas.”

You think your moves are working, that your game is tight.

It’s not.

The fact is while you are smiling and looking down my shirt I’m fantasizing about grabbing the back of your head and slamming you face first into the wall.

I’m pondering the physics of me breaking your face with the paperback in my bag. Of course, that would be a terrible weapon. I can’t imagine trying to pick bone matter out of my hair.

When you tell me how “exotic” I look, I think about how many pounds of force it would take for me to jam the purple ink pen in my pocket right into the soft tissue under your ear. Of course I would never do that, that is my favorite pen.

The slight narrowing of my eyes is not me trying to be cute. I am peering at your unprotected hand as you reach to give me a playful little touch; I want to break your fingers. I want you to stop reading shitty books about how to pick up women.

When you see that flicker of crazy in my eyes, do the smart thing.



Shannon Barber lives in Seattle and writes things while snorting lines of fine Pacific Northwest Coffee. One of those three things is a straight lie.
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