The Libertarian asks
what I think of Kamela

and what she said about Biden
in the debate

I do not believe you 
are a racist, she said

before taking him apart
for cozying up with segregationists

I say 
I am behind the criticism of his policies—
how can I support Biden,
he interjects, if he's a racist?

I've been down this road before
with the guy energized by the discovery

that people on the left vote
for racists

as if that makes me and him
the same

there are moments in history, she said 
when states fail to preserve the civil rights of all people

I forget to pivot
to the story of the racism we share

I return to local candidates 
running on conviction and compassion 

but he prefers to crow over
my hypocrisy 

for a few minutes, sitting with him on his porch,
I am lost

he has an energy
a low menace, its own thrill

I take him in, bearded 
motorcycle lover with a good belly

living in a comfortable suburban home
in an all-but-gated community

an answer to a question that was lingering
in my head

and that little girl was me.