Open for nearly thirty-six years, Pool #2 was the only swimming pool for blacks in Baltimore. Accompanied by tennis courts and eventually a playground, Druid Hill Park carved a space in its grove of trees for blacks to enjoy family, sports, and recreation. For many years Pool #2 and its tennis courts provided an environment to enjoy life and celebrate wins during strained times. I, Colored acknowledges the rich experience of black life despite Jim Crow, playing with language of the period to present ideas of segregation versus integration.
Written by Tiffany Jones, Voice Over by Alisa Brock
I Colored that day. I Colored every day. I Colored in the morning, I Colored in the afternoon, I even Colored late into the night. Yellows, browns and blues are my favorite, they just make me feel so warm inside... peaceful … at ease -- but sometimes I sneak in a red, give it a little edge, yah know? And the best part is, I stayed in the lines -- those Black ones. You know the ones that just keep everything together, the ones that just keep everything where it’s supposed to be.
I followed the directions, “Color - in - the - lines.”
My friends who would Color with me, well some of them would stay in the lines, like me -- but of course some wouldn’t. I tried that one time before yah know, to Color outside of the lines … I just couldn’t, it didn’t feel right -- it didn’t to me at least.
I watched them though… my other friends, they were bold, they took risks! They didn’t let those black lines stop them at all! My friends would say, “girrrl I love how you always Color in those lines, but you know you should try Coloring outside of the lines, just once, just one time, for me! Pleeeease, we can do it together.”
I thought t o myself, it’s Coloring, right? What’s the big deal? I won’t be Coloring alone, and I would have all my friends Coloring with me, so why not?!
So…I went for it, and I Colored that day. I Colored that morning, I Colored that afternoon, I even Colored late into the night. Once it was too dark to keep going, I stopped.
I stepped back. To look. To see.
Those black lines -- they’re still there, still trying to, you know, keep everything together.
That next morning, I woke up -- and I, Colored.