A Modest Proposition
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This is a modest proposition
To love you wholly, holy, whole
The way white gays through their white gaze can only pretend at
I know you’ve pretended
Folded yourself to cramping in their little white boxes stacked neatly on white shelves
I know you’ve abstained from food and sunlight
Attempted to starve the melanin from your skin
I see you
I see your entire queer, strange, foreign, peculiar self
Glistening skin deep and dark, shimmering oceans that ancient intuition lying deep below the surface
Only the earth herself could possibly hold all of you
Perceive depths that even you have not dared to explore
I’m the earth soaking up your salt
I am the coarse grains
I am blessed brown dirt
I move with the urgency of water traversing the highest mountain
I cannot tell you soon enough how my body and yours come from the same scars
The same water
I used to think that luffas came from the ocean
Conflated them with sea sponges
In my mother’s birth place, she taught me the luffa plant is a green fruit with spongy insides,
That if you’re not careful about the way you crack her open and bare her flesh to the sun
It won’t dry out properly to become the practical item it was intended to be.
I am the sun baking skin,
The water that dissipates to meet her
The skin that soaks her up.
Last year, my mother cracked herself open,
Revealing a messy labyrinth of hurt I had only heard glimpses of before
Pulling back the curtain to unveil the truth of her girlhood,
I learned a mother is only a child who had her own,
Whether or not that child has healed.
That if left to their own devices, a child will repeat the violence they were given and call it love.
If left out in the sun too long, she will bake, harden, her edges will sharpen,
But shards of broken mirrors and rippling water still reflect the trembling portrait of a woman with more dignity and conviction than the earth knowing with certainty that the moon will never leave its side.
Mama, you are black woman excellence.
My shimmering reflection that taught me that my worth is not determined by what others think of me, but by how I can uplift them.
You are the strength in my bones, you are the fire that burns in my belly, you are each vertebrae in my spine keeping me upright, you have made me.
You have made me wholly, holy, whole.
Make your way out onto Whyte Ave and hang a left and make your way towards your next destination: The Second Cup on the corner of Whyte Ave and Calgary Trail.