Sweetness dwells underneath my palms
Gentle and easeful when needed
By touch and nature,
caressing like the lavender swaying in the fields
God makin’ herself known in the colors we rarely see
Like the chosen kinship between Shug and Celie
Between fire and water
Red and blue
Green and yellow
Black and brown
Mixing into something deeper than underground
And higher than Jupiter, Mercury, and infinity.
Broken down and ground,
Anchored at the souls of my feet.
This is a discovered invitation
Found by concealing my face, the longing in my eyes
And turning my back with my arms outstretched
Wandering and wondering about the abstractions,
Constructions, inherent instructions
Of living life with this particular classification of soil-toned skin,
Asking the stars:
What kind of flowers did Granny lay with when she realized she was the Earth?
What kind of trees does she grow?
Does she know she feels just like the Autumn wind?
What is this quiet strength that dwells behind my tongue?
I know that I am made up of many things,
Known and unknown
Not among most but somehow
in the midst,
in the air,
in the footsteps
Stained of red clay
Scented with tobacco leaves
Ivory tusks transformed into black wrists
Gripping extension cords mimicking cracked whips
Decorated with Pandora charm bracelets and mauve-painted fingertips.
I am made up of many things like engrained pathological responses to harshness
Like crying out in the silence of the dark
Or cringing at the taste of salt water dripping from my own face.
Things that are familiar like mundanity and false realities,
Lies and corruptions
Hypocrisies that almost act as if it is a tragedy to my identity,
Subconsciously rejecting the notion that
I am the sole reason for my circumstances and man-made poverty,
That I would be better off stretching my arms out to the slave master’s tools
I am in search of something that is beyond our definition of abstraction.
I want handwritten recipes and holistic materials and remedies
Because all I know is that burgundy wine and dark skin men with the nappiest of roots soothe me.
Tobacco leaves filled with people-pleasing tendencies and trauma responses get burned
Taken up to the head and blown out into the wind,
Cradled by yellow hands carrying me back home.
I am in search of Granny’s shoemaking tools.