And they keep telling me: my Black is beautiful.
As though this new revelation should surprise me.
Shock me, into
appreciating my existence, and to be grateful for my borrowed space.
How do they know I do not bow to my temple of blackness daily?
and pay homage often to the struggles whitened out in history texts?
They encourage me to accept my wide heavy hips and thick thighs.
They speak in weak tones of expression of inner beauty and imitations of color blindness,
Who are these that dictate what my reflections should sing?
Those who trap my stories in a box
Those who describe me as one thing.
One beautiful Black thing.
Why should i be defined, aligned and understood?
they teach me to know myself, while
always fearing i will recognize the lies behind their borrowed truths
and hand-woven sermons
Having produced an image of me that they find palatable and comfortable,
they clip my wings and demand i soar.
Young girl, I pray you see these vultures hovering over you.
They prey on innocence.
Taking blood when able.
How can you decipher their evils?
My young one, they will come bearing gifts
of perfumed prose,
that may seem heartfelt but is rather a memorized eulogy.
Silky phrases that plead the divergence of legs,
and the raising of hips.
Young girl, I pray you believe your worth.
Immeasurable and unquantifiable.
Young girl, I pray you learn to love the broken reflection.
Tender and complex.
Young girl, it might seem like you will never win,
in this game of greed and falling queens.
But know this
That the worst of the vultures,
that suck you dry, leaving you hollow and barren
They are birthed
out of you
The young boy who silently witnessed his mothers slaughter-
He sits at the edge of my bed and wails a most dreadful wail.
Their voices pierce through my borrowed peace.
Those lost children hovering, those motherless and fatherless.
They will seek revenge, this they have promised.
And the childless?
I saw the seeds of vengeance sprouting through the heart of one woman-
her infant torched before her eyes.
The father helpless to the greedy and violent lust over his beloved daughter-
He sits in the far corner, muttering the words of Socrates and Soyinka.
They seek me in the spirits of many midnights to open their heavy packages of sorrow-
The horrors their eyes have seen but their heart can never comprehend.
Their belief is that they are the forgotten peoples of a once great but crumbling nation.
Their haunted eyes, I wish I could erase-
But I cannot.