Nightmares

It leeches and bleeds

As I scratch with blunted nails found on top pillow.

They curve into my cheek to my head where nails can’t reach.

The wounded symphony of rust and blood

And red and lead

Tapping on the bones as I try to go to bed

It is testing me, a dream I can not see

As I roll with a grinded grin

And try to sleep again

I dream of stability

“I am surprised you are still here.”

“Why?”

“Because all good dreams die young.”

“…and?”

“Wells it’s been ten years now now…and yet here you are no matter how hard I tried to get you to go away. I wonder what that means.”

“Probably that you will never be rid of me?”

“Yea…I guess so…”

A caged soul

I think it is ok to feel. Yet there is no way I will allow myself to.

I hold myself to a different standard. Something not shared by those I love. I think it is ok for others to be open but I will never let myself to conform. Emotions are easier when they are locked in a box. No one is hurt when no one is there. I can show you some expressions but I can make it reach my eyes.

I have been told that I am a liar. That it is best to be truthful. But I am not ready to share that side of me. Probably because I lost the key. I bet that it is someone in my childhood. The one that I talk about with a smile on my face. Look closer you may see some cracks. But not yet, right now I am able to speak. Listen when I say that there is a chance that I will never give in.

I hide my emotions because it keeps them safe. I rather suffer in their place. I rather sit by and watch the emotions and in their eyes and know that they are blessed. They are worth it. They are precious.

I am not and I do not think there is anything that can change that.

Honestly, this is terrible

I am not a momma to be held with contempt. I think I am exempt

From such animosity because there is no one, surely no one

Who can hate me as much as me

Such a belittling feeling and yet so deserved

For who else can ignore such a girl

One with a smile so sweetly filled with love

Who else would dare turn away from her hugs

Crying cause their skin is burning

Sleeping well into midmorning

Could you do it and still hold yourself on high

Or would you feel as I do? Despair beside a happy child

Making up excuses to stay a while

Could you really believe yourself worthy of praise

When not a day goes by that doesn’t end in a haze

This is what it is like to parent with depression

To parent in a borderline state of obsession

This desire to leave sticks to the bones

Yet, I know, I truly know, that this small child is home

Honestly_ what a terrible poem

A movement that stills

I have been accused of being a follower. Why? Because I decided to share my thoughts on a movement that means to so much to me. Yet they did not believe me when I said this. Told me that I had no place to speak out on such a subject.

It took me awhile to realize that this is because they thought I was white.

See,I am one of those people who has a particular skill. I can “pass” as a different race as long as my face isn’t shown. My name, my voice, my way of writing. All passing in the eyes of society. It is not something that I like to think about but I do acknowledge that I get a sense of pleasure when people first stumble upon what I looked like.

My name is Jessica. Such a mundane and boring name. I hated it as a kid and I hate it even more now. There is no history to this name. No culture related stories I can tell to my friends. No one will look at me and ask me the origin of my name. I hated how unoriginal it was growing up. It didn’t help that people teased me over it, but really, that was a given since nothing is sacred with it comes to bullies. So yea, I hated it and I hate it now. Though less so than I used to.

As a brown skinned Jessica I pass. I am assumed to be not like “them” as though that is something to have pride in. Not like “them” but I am not accepted into any other group. So who I am? It doesn’t matter as much as it used to.

Still, I fight for the culture I was born into. I feel pride in my brown skin in the proper way, whatever that means. But because of my ability to pass I am often faced with those who feel like I have no space to speak in.

This girl told me that I should stick to my own kind yet when I do so i am ridiculed. It isn’t my fault that can’t see who I am really am but once I educate her on that fact I get blocked.

Or I get told to shut up

Or I get called a race traitor

One I was even called an Uncle Tom. Though that one was because I have a biracial daughter.

I am brown. My skin, as my daughter says, the color of the earth we play in. The one that sheltered the plants. Life thrives beneath my skin. I am proud of it and my connection to such a beautiful phenomenon.

And I stand by my people, my culture that I love, and fight for the injustice thrust upon us. I may not be without privilege but I still have my sense of justice. And I will fight till my brown matters in the eyes of the law and the society in which I live in.

Even if people do not believe I am real

Distortion

Wanna hear what I think?

We are tired of crawling in the mud

Covered in blood of our brethren

Screaming he was just a friend

Just a man who wanted to live

Wanna hear what I’ve been told

We are tired, this shit is getting old

To many of us have left behind corpse

With grieving mothers looking on

Broken daughters, and forgotten sons

We were never given a chance

Knees got torn when we tried to stand

Do you know how this can end?

Give us freedom from oppression

Listen to our whispered lessons

Lead us not to an early grave

And let us walk at an equal pace