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“White Lies”

The lies I could tell,

when I was growing up’

light-bright’ near white,

high-yellow, red-boned,

in a black place,

were just white lies.

I could easily tell the white folks

that we lived up town,

not in the pink and green

shanty-fied shotgun section

along the tracks. I could act

like my homemade dresses

came straight out the window

of Mason Blanche. I could even

keep quiet, quiet as kept,

like the time a white girl said

(squeezing my hand), now

we have three of us in the class.

But I paid for it everytime

mama found out.

She put her hands on me

then washed out my mouth

with ivory soap. This

is to purify, she said

and cleanse your lying tongue.

Believing her I swallowed suds

thinking they’d work

from the inside out.


The author of the poem want to show us how common is that children tell a white lie to his friends or family. Most people, when they was growing up, told lies.  Many adults take white lies as a stage of childhood but many adults do not. Parents in turn take that as normal but then they want to do the impossible to admonish theirchildren. Likewise the author showed him the poem, when the girl’s mother learned that the girl was saying white lied to in school, his mother wash his mouth out with soap. Notif you have accomplished something with that but I am sure that if a physical injury made ​​him because if the girl had swallowed the soap was able to kill her. But my question is, how children learn to lie? someone should teach because no child is born knowing lie. And is that since we are children our parents lie. The first and mostfamous lie: A stork brings babies in the night to his parents. That’s a big LIE! Another lie:When a child falls off a tooth, his parents tell him: Go and put it under your pillow for the”mouse” to bring you a surprise. The point is how adults want their children not to lie ifthe first to tell lies to children they are. If it is Ok to do to not break the magic and theimagination that children have but is a behavior that children learn. There are different ways to teach a child and using violence is not the best way. Whileadults do not learn to fixed that mistake of lying to others, children will not learn.


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