For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf

For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf Character List

the lady in brown

The lady in brown narrates “dark phrases.” In "toussaint," she finds inspiration while reading about the Haitian revolutionary, Toussaint L'Ouverture, and her passion ultimately leads her to find a real-life hero.

the lady in red

In “no assistance,” she describes letting go of a man for whom she once felt deep unrequited love. In "one," she tells the story of a beautiful but isolated coquette. She is also the main narrator of the tragic tale in “a nite with beau willie brown.”

the lady in blue

She finds a balance between her Nuyorican and African American identity through dance and music in “now I love somebody more than.” In “abortion cycle #1,” she describes the pain and shame of ending an unwanted pregnancy. She describes the alienation of living in Harlem in “i usedta live in the world.” In “no more love poems #3,” she wonders if repressing emotion "like white people" would be a less painful way of dealing with lost love.

the lady in green

She acts out the role of the beautiful Haitian showgirl Sechita in “sechita.” She demonstrates her sense of empowerment and maturation when she asks a former lover to return her "stuff" (the things that make her unique, her scars, her feelings, etc.) in “somebody walked off wid alla my stuff."

the lady in yellow

She loses her virginity to one of her male friends in the back of a Buick in “graduation nite.” She describes her desire to be loved while grappling with her identity as a woman of color in “no more love poems #4.” She is also the central character who contracts HIV from her closeted gay lover in “positive.”

the lady in orange

In “no more love poems #1,” she describes her attempts to be perfect for a man and her subsequent realization that she needs to embrace her sorrow instead of ignoring it.

the lady in purple

She narrates the story of “sechita." Then, she competes with her friends for a man and experiences the humiliation of abandonment in “pyramid.” In “no more love poems #2,” she describes her love of dancing with strangers until she falls in love with a bold, confident man.

Beau Willie Brown

A veteran newly returned from Iraq who is uneducated, addicted to drugs, and beats his girlfriend Crystal; in a psychotic fit he drops their two children out a five-story Harlem window. He is likely suffering from PTSD. In the original printing of for colored girls..., Beau Willie Brown was a Vietnam veteran.


Beau Willie Brown's longtime on-off girlfriend and the mother of his two children. After he returns from Iraq and develops a drug addiction, Crystal refuses to marry him, but he keeps coming back into her life.


The secretly-gay man in “positive” unknowingly infects his female lover (the lady in yellow) with HIV and then flies into a rage when she confronts him about his unsafe sexual practices.


A beautiful girl who is dancing during the Creole Carnival in Natchez, MS. Her audience is mostly made up of drunk rowdy men.

Toussaint L'Ouverture

The leader of the Haitian Revolution. In the early 1800s, he led a society of slaves in battle against their French colonizers and won. Although he died in 1803, he became a hero for many slaves in the New World and remains an important historical figure today.

Toussaint Jones

A young man whom the lady in brown meets in St. Louis. She dreams of going to Haiti to connect with the spirit of Toussaint L'Ouverture, but on the way, she finds Jones, a real-life boy with a revolutionary spirit.

Willie Colon

A Nuyorican (Puerto Rican New Yorker) salsa musician and political activist.