Black women are SO beautiful

I knew this when I was a child, watching the women in my life glide across rooms in beautiful colors, dancing in bare feet, hollering so the neighbors could hear and join in the laughter; in salons, in church, on the stoop, at the movies (being shushed), and all over the corners of my life. Growing up, I received many messages that this truth was dead wrong and I struggled to believe that the beauty I saw in the women in my sphere could also apply to me. And when I did believe, I was able to embody it at last.

We are Seeds

Accept that you are a beautiful thing
The kind of creature only poetry can convey
And when you transcend from this world
And into the next
Your skin will still be the color of earth
Your eyes the color of mountains
Your hair the fabric of grain
Your heart the cradle of children
And your womb the soul of the world

when they try to jail your mind and
hide this precious knowing from reaching your feet
you live half a life with half your staff

We are the seeds of the ancestors

Beat back the strangling envy
its ignorance and irreverence 

Mon cher, they want to love you
but would rather battle this need
than be buried in its treasure

photo credit: janie vinson

hey

I just turned 45 and my whole life seems to have turned upside down. Suddenly I am being cosmically reunited with passions that used to fuel my spirit. Maybe because I’ve experienced so much loss over the last 5 years. Maybe because I never felt middle-aged until this number crept up on me. Maybe because I lost the most precious person in my life recently, my beloved grandmother, and a piece of my soul could not return from that loss.

Add on top of this, covid, sheltering in place, being a disaster service worker; and watching my social media feed fill with so many voices suddenly in support of black lives as if something finally clicked, as if every black death that came before #georgefloyd was somehow justified; undeserving of the same scrutiny.

Aching to express these losses and desires, hopes and outrage; and a call to be alive AND living, elevates me now from wanting to write to needing to write.

I plan to post 1 poem a week, as a practice. If you find some value in my work, consider donating to the lgbtq freedom fund to help secure bail for trans and lgbq folks who are detained in jail or immigrant detention.

~ in solidarity towards a common humanity

/qianya