Mother’s Words

You make me feel…

Before you, when I am not with you, I stand tall like the woman I am-

Head up

Eyes looking into the eyes of men with no fear

Chin titled towards the sky, allowing the sunlight to bathe me and cover me as to let the world know that I am child of God

Chest open wide, to allow myself to take in all the air I can, so my voice booms-felt like the vibration of a elephant stomping its foot, from near and beyond the horizon

Chest open wide, as if to pound upon to say that I am here, to make my presence not only felt, but heard-established

But after you speak those harsh words like the belt striking, instead of back, my soul

– you the woman you bore me,

the woman who taught me to be confident

-you, yes you-

you tear my soul down

you strike down the very spirit you fostered to build, to create

I take the lashing using the mouth you gave, the vocabulary you crammed into my brain when you made me read those books and write those book reports, I am using the knowledge you gave me

“Don’t just take things as they are. Ask questions”-you said,

but I guess you are the exception.

My head slightly lower, my chest as open as a locked door, my chin not as high feeling the cold dusk.

But as you taught me, I will not let you see that

I will not back down as you never did.

On the inside my soul is as cut up as a slave’s back,

on the oustide my stature is strong.


when the doors are closed and the curtains are drawn

when the clouds blanket the light of the moon

when the fog drapes over the night air

my feet will feel tear drops

my stature will crumble

my spirit will ache

I will wither into the fetus I once was

In moments going from woman to child

from as tall as giraffe to as small as a field mouse

reversing the stages of life

from adulthood back to child


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