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Showing posts from March, 2014

Home Alone

I spend a lot of time in my bathroom mirror these days It’s enormous I painted and mounted it myself Hired a handyman to install the vanity lights I am willing to engage experts Somehow, this does not feel the same as asking for help
Black Woman is my mother wielding grace, guerilla tactics and fairy godmother good will all in the same afternoon Black Woman is my grandmother exacting her own resurrections and revenge in the form of success and Black Woman is stubborn love extending, again and again, their well-bitten hands
I hear the cadence of their steps when I’m out in the world Patent leather, peep-toe wedges, galoshes, sneakers and fuzzy slippers I don’t move within the soundtrack of “legacy” but the arc and lilt of their melody play on a loop Like them, my skin is imbued with pride, satisfaction, fulfillment and exhaustion Is that what Black Woman means? Being exhausted? I might be willing to be half as Black if I could be half as weary
“You come from a long line of women w…

When You Call Yourself Names

At 19, I was gone
I ran
Left my country
and a mother who was mostly silent
Escaped a father who was a brute
I got the best of his worst, being the oldest son

Expected to enter law or real estate
Placed in boarding school at the age of nine
I despised it
It was the most expensive school in my country
Though the public school had creative, imaginative teachers
Those kids received a better education
We had pretentiousness, networking and "proper" old school marms
all the way from England
My aunt -who shouldn't have- paid for it all
My father -who shouldn't have- wanted my profound gratitude

I haven't attended any reunions
I did make friends for life
Our bonds are more akin to having survived prison together
When I took my son to visit the school
you could still smell oppression in the wood
I showed him where they made us kneel
Sam Neill, the actor, graduated two years ahead of me
Once a celebrated alumnus, they asked him to return
He refused to come back, ever, unl…