“Mulatto Melodies (Con/Fused)”

Written by on November 12th, 2012 // Filed under Journal


by Perry “Vision” DiVirgilio

There are whispers that echo

In chambers

Up cords

Through lobes

In Actions


In fractions

Of a second

The second

You hear


White Boy


Half Breed







Con, Not one of us

Fused, Parents of different backgrounds

Con, Mom Black, lives in white area

Fused, Dad White, lives in the hood

Con, Mom’s house, nigger is whispered outside the windows

Fused, Dad’s house, outside, not one of us.

Con, there goes that monkey

Fused, high yellow boys think they’re the shit

Or think they’re shit

Think they just wanna blend in

Transform, bend, and fold like origami

Camouflage complexion

Fit the description

Identify and find solace on one side of the coin

Dizzy from spinning in circles

Con, he got that good hair

Fused, would trade it for concealor kink any day

Con, lightskin is played out

Fused, to those white boys that aint nothing new.

Guess mom never knew welcoming committees greet fist first

Them said, “You!”

Boy said, “who?”

Him, Punch

Boy, Stumble

“Go the fuck back across Girard Avenue”

Him, Punch

Boy, falls, curls, awaits

“Tell that nigger mom of yours…”

Them, Kick

Boy, cries

Them cry

“Nigger, Nigger, Nigger, Nigger…”

Con, Dad’s house,

White half the time

Fused, Mom’s house

Nigger, 24/7





a race

boy never knew he was running

Mom says, “tell them you’re both.”

Dad says, “tell them you’re both.”

Them say “you’re neither!”

Them whisper, “not one of us.”


In chambers

Up chords

Through lobes

Boy wondering how many brains will it take to fix this nervous system that tells boy he’s black by one drop,

Or the one pint that painted Fairmount neighborhood concrete

Con, Light, bright, two shades too nigger

Fused, never nigger enough to overcome his too light

Con, boy never knew he was con

Fused until they told him he was confused

Told him he was born from


From naïve

From taboo

From Jade

From hate

From farewell

From failed suicide attempts

From whispers echoing

In blocked memories

On Hidden Tracks

Of biracial blues

Mulatto melodies


in the margins

of identity

with one drop

From boys

who wonder





it takes

to fix

a nervous



Perry “Vision” DiVirgilio is an accomplished poet, actor and teacher.  As a poet, Vision was awarded the Alternative Soul award for best Spoken Word Performer. He is a founding member of Spoken Soul 215, Philadelphia’s premier spoken word collective which hosts the largest monthly live arts event in Philadelphia’s history, “The Harvest.” Vision is currently the Artistic Director for Philadelphia Youth Poetry Movement where he teaches poetry as an avenue for self expression, self-esteem, public speaking and peer mentoring. He is also the head coach of the Philadelphia Youth Poetry team, the 2011 Brave New Voices international youth poetry slam champions. Vision’s poetry and activism is featured in the upcoming CNN “Black in America 5″ hosted by Soledad O’Brien.

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3 Responses to ““Mulatto Melodies (Con/Fused)””

  1. Would love to join your program. I am a writer that stopped and have so much to say. Please contact me if I can get any information. I love this show. I AM BLACK!

    Posted by Keyarna S
  2. This is a very touching poem. I am black and white and have had identity confusion my whole life. Never thought that there are other people out there with similar experiences.
    Thank you.

    Posted by spice4thegumbo