The Wind Must Be So Lonely

Restless wind

Shivers through trees,

Knocks on shuttered windows,

Begs for attention.

 

What does it cry out for

With no voice of its own?

It finds objects to imitate a scream,

Rustles pleas that soothe or bite.

 

Is it solitude that drives the madness?

Thrashing movements, flurried air.

Maybe it cries for a companion,

Sighing when there is no answer.

 

Separated by misunderstandings,

No sound, no sight to create.

Only able to force others

To howl and tremble.

 

The wind must be so lonely.

Poem From Capulet

I wrote this poem as an assignment my freshman year of high school, but I find it applicable today as it is based off the feud between the Montagues and Capulets in Romeo and Juliet. Today we still pass down our biases and prejudices to our children and keep these wars and acts of terror going. I don’t have children, but I hope when I do that I am not the one responsible for teaching them hate.

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I’ve Seen Hunger

I’ve seen hunger. I’ve seen it in the popped bellies of children begging in a Haitian village, asking for an extra shirt to add to their collection of one. I’ve seen it in the streets of Accra where scavengers prowl the streets with outstretched hands and scheming thoughts. I’ve seen it among the Ewe drums in Dagbe, where men sleep like babies upon concrete slabs and roofs are thatched with old straw. I’ve seen it in a one-room shack in the hills of Appalachia, the stench its own brand of security system. I’ve seen it in the grey trickle of water that was the life source of Dominicana. I’ve seen it in the fidgeting fingers of lost souls admitting addiction in Philadelphia. I’ve seen it in the eyes of strangers as I pass them by, their challenging stares eating away at me, absorbing some of my nutrients, my soul, as they whisper abruni. Do not tell me what hunger is. Do not tell me I could never understand. Those nights in Ghana, West Virginia, the Dominican Republic, Pennsylvania…I was a part of that hunger. I was the reaching fingertips, crusted with dirt and dried blood, I was the open mouths, dry, lips blistering in the hot sun, I was the stretched skin fighting to contain malnourishment, I was the hollow gaze that greedily gobbled the sight of privilege, I was the tattered cloth that clung desperately to coarse skin, the only fibers that would make that human contact. Do not tell me what hunger is. I’ve seen hunger.

 

Joy

I went to Taylor’s funeral service today and it was a beautiful celebration of her life and a good reminder of just how many people she’s touched in her short lifetime. I’ve found myself lately conflicting with a lot of ups and downs in terms of emotions. When I got the news of her passing I was attending a wedding. Saturday, I was at a baby shower, yesterday, I was at my cousin’s baptism and today, I was at a funeral. Even though we all gathered for Chi’s death, we found ourselves laughing over our silly memories and so grateful to all be together again. I wrote a poem a few years ago that reflects on these contrasts in life and I thought today was the perfect day to share it. It’s called Joy.

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Scorched

I’m burning up inside.

These changes cauterize my soul.

I’m engulfed in your dilemmas.

Your fleeting fancies take their toll.

 

A nervous pit begins to fester

In my gut, weighted by lead.

These tales a sinking reminder,

Anchoring me to waste in bed.

 

Why is my heart so flustered,

Skipping beats and out of time?

I’m choking on my air.

I’m boiling inside a cage of rhyme.

 

Let me roast in flickering flames.

They leap and spit and sear.

You will spout out some devotion.

I will tell you what you want to hear.

 

What is this new feeling?

Anxiety hot, a blazing beacon.

Brand my body with this sign,

Let the world know how I weaken.

 

How I tremble at the thought

Of something new and unknown,

How I writhe in my own embers.

Just let me burn alone.

If We Should Part

Then what becomes of ended love?

A stale and twisted turn of fate.

A shattered frame of what it was.

Now creeping in, a taste of hate.

Where once was warmth, a chill has spread

And strangers lock accusing eyes.

Yet sweet relief with passion dead,

A shield for hearts from endless lies.

This tale was spun from wounded silk

That sagged and wept from too much weight.

An acid stain from sour milk,

A scar from caution played too late.

This is the question now to ask,

For answers lost, or never said.

To say for sure is no small task.

So let it rest, come back to bed.