last night I read a poem written by another poet, Alexis Pauline Gumbs.
i embodied this poem with my own breath, my own flesh, my tongue. i let it live inside me. i let it breathe out like a ceremony.
after my reading, i looked up, to a room empty of breath, glistening with tears, letting the medicine of the poem move through them.
Alexis’ poem — called & — is nestled inside the Dear Sister Anthology that I contributed to.
I didn’t know i would read her poem last night, but around sunset, it came to my mind, and i knew it wanted to be spoken.
I’m not sure how to say what I want to say about this poem or my reading of it, this anthology, or the space a group of contributors & listeners co-created last night, alongside the ocean.
I just need to somehow say that it was magic.
It was the sweetest, quietest, loudest, fiercest, most intimate reading space I’ve been to in a long time.
It was a room full of folks who’ve survived so much — the world, our every days, the brokenness we live inside.
A room full of beauty & healing & transformation — a room full of metal workers: folks who can put metal to fire & make something beautiful from it.
& I am one of them.
& I sit here in the bright sun, coming through my living room windows, with a ficus tree that tears up sometimes & drips on me, in my garden.
i am present to the way we reveal ourselves to ourselves & to each other in the most unexpected ways.
i am present to the way we choose (or choose not) to hold one another. to bear witness. to listen. to see.
i am so grateful for all of it. the times i am frozen w fear or grief — & for when the ice breaks open to water.
i am grateful for the melting ice of me.
i am grateful for the community that will drink from the water of me.
i am grateful, for the brokenness. i am grateful for the goodness.
we are so, so good.
we are so, so, so, so good.