Not my white mom’s; my black mom’s.
Well, “African-American” if you want to get technical but who wants to get technical with someone who pronounces your name wrong every goddamn time she calls,
when she calls,
if she calls.
I’m not bitter.
I guess the problem with us, as people, is that we think we are gifted with eternal time; that we can spend entire lifetimes fucking up without any repercussions. Without any consequences.
In second grade I got my first pair of glasses;
In fourth grade I got sent to the office.
In eighth grade I won my first spelling bee and, in tenth grade, I learned that words only help
when you speak them.
I spent my entire childhood wishing I could bottle thunderstorms. Heavy thunderclouds and lightning bolts fastened beneath glass, electric wind swirling like frenzied lightning bugs in mason jars – I wanted it all. I wished ink into words and words into mouths and mouths into outstretched arms and that mothers could not both arrive and depart in the same sentence.
I wished to be reckless. I wished that even when I could talk about darkness no longer, even when there were no more instruments to adequately express my anguish; even when there was nothing left to tarnish, I wished to be fearless.
You see, there will come a day when there will be plenty of time to be cobwebs, plenty of time to be bronze medals, or snail shells, or lupine seeds, or fragments of exoskeletons examined and pinned, rustling at the past, but there will never be enough time to live if you spend it wishing fantasies into realities.
Did you know that a mother bird regurgitates her food into the mouths of her children to make sure they eat?
Sometimes I wish I knew who the fuck I’ve been trying to feed by emptying myself.
I spent every shitty high school lunch period wishing my cut apple could return to itself without help, without reassurance; that its sections might remember each other. I was devastated the day I discovered that
could not survive without
I wish I had learned how to speak with words long before I learned how to speak with my body.
I wish my black mom would call me.
I wish I didn’t spend so many years trying to convince myself that fixing pain with more pain would, somehow, teach me how to survive; how to be okay.