tell me how this works for you

not sure
what you meant
you said
you learned
how to channel
your feelings
how that happened to happen
how that would not happen
to all emotional fruit
choked down soured

you seem challenged
to express any feeling
or let
your face reveal
truth from
your heart
much less
your mouth
it stays trapped soured

your eyes
caged in
your tongue
behind your teeth soured
or was that the point
you were making
to hide and bury
and pray that
you finally
dug it up it
wasn’t dust
or worse
forgot it was


doesn’t seem a big deal
your language and ideas
feeding someone who seeks
to starve you
to isolate you
to erase you
until you recognize
that the engineer of your destruction
looks and sounds like you
that is black respectability politics
at its worst
when your work does not count
until it no longer belongs to you
until it no longer represents you.

Watch the tide

This is the wane of the full moon
the time to toss to the sea
that which must be discarded
that which no longer serves you
that which no longer comforts you
she or he who is toxic to the spirit
now banished from sight
such is life
these are people you forget exist
revert to distant strangers
cast into the sea
burn the letters
wipe away all paths to you
burn the sage
salt down the steps
arise renewed
I am released.