by taye diggs
illustrated by shane w. evans
i grew up a military brat.
military communities are often more integrated
than the typical american neighborhood,
but still, certain ignorant attitudes exist and persist.
i remember my mother telling me about the time an asian boy in my neighborhood
called me “black”, like it was a dirty word.
i came in the house crying, she said.
i’m a caramel brown, but i’m one of those brown-skinned girls
who always see themselves as darker than we are,
being quite envious of smoothed-skinned ebony beauties.
real life in america has not always been so kind to those of darker-complexions.
enter taye diggs a handsome and very chocolate actor, singer, and (surprise!) author.
his friend, artist shane evans, collaborated with him to put a poem
written by diggs in his college days
into the form of a motivational children’s book for brown children,
no matter the multiracial flavor.
from his neighborhood friends’ comments
the chocolate boy in the book starts to notice that
his name, hair, nose and skin
are different from timmy, johnny and mark’s.
the boy’s mama wisely reminds him
that his fudge-colored skin is perfect, like chocolate.
and everybody likes chocolate.