A 10 year old with a love for books,
But the characters depicted often have the same look.
Straight hair, light eyes, and fair colored skin.
Not many look like me or my kin.
Hair blonde, brown, black, and red as can be.
Problem is, that none of them look like me.
Beautiful brown skin,
brown eyes,
a crown full of tight curls.
And a smile bright enough to light up the world.
Where are the girls who look like me?
Black princesses and heroes, where could they all be?
Maybe if I keep reading.
Yes, just keep reading and then I will see,
A school kid, ballerina, or mermaid who looks like me.
With a heart full of hope,
I continue to read.
Turning the pages,
I finish each one with speed.
Anticipation growing with excitement flowing,
Through my heart and body,
Just waiting to see,
A little black girl who looks like me.
The end is drawing near,
The last page of the book.
The story is done.
I never found that look of the little black girl somewhere in the book. 

I now have a daughter who is checking out books.
She is still on a search for the girl with that look.
She turns to me with a disappointing sigh.
She lifts up her head and looks me in my eyes.
“Mommy”, she says sadly,
“Why didn’t I see, a little black girl who looks like me?”
Here it is,
Years later,
Same question, different day.
Same issue causing a new generation’s dismay.
The familiar look in her eyes,
Sparked ambition inside.
Causing me decide to write my own book.
To create my own character with my own look.
A hero named Magnificent Macie who travels the world.
With beautiful brown skin and a head full of curls.
Now, I can open a book and finally see,
A little black girl who looks just like me. 

This feature was submitted by Charlene Goddard

Charlene Goddard has always had a passion for writing and performing arts. She launched her first children’s book titled “Magnificent Macie!” in 2019. Her twin sister, Britney Goddard, is her illustrator. Charlene is determined to touch the lives of others through her writing while bringing awareness to global issues such as poverty, crime, and racism. Her goal is to empower the youth and encourage them to embrace their inner hero. Charlene’s second book, “Magnificent Macie on the Move”, will be launching on August 1st 2021. 

For more on Charlene Goddard, click here.