it is not a title i earned
i do not claim it
try to tell me
that i can’t be
pretty and rough
all at once
or that i should have to explain
the knife in my pocket,
the hair under my arms,
the polish on my nails
because in my own
version of myself
i encompass each
line of my own topography
ranging from river to
when you ask of me
my heart on a platter,
i will offer you my tongue,
for how long have you mistaken being
quiet for being
on the path last week, near sundown
i carried my binoculars
and aimed them towards the treetops
down by the arroyo
i didn’t recognize any songs,
but heard them, nonetheless
i watched the desert cardinal
ahead of me off the path,
perched on the cholla,
heard the quail scurrying
through the dead leaves
glimpses of the feathers on their
when i listen
when i look
when i am quiet
i expand and i stretch
and i am filled
i am not small for being
besides, the size of
cannot be measured
I see her there beside him in the parking lot,
studying the stars,
trying to make him proud.
I want to tell her
that one day she will find the Little Dipper
from the window of a plane flying over the Sahara.
But I know she can only feel her feet on one continent for now,
so I just hope she knows she can be enough tonight
loving the stars without knowing Perseus from Orion.
sister, all the water, blood and juices
oozing from you body are
freely becoming one.
and in a sea so fiercely curious,
you stand at the shore –
the culmination of all the whispers
and limbs and bones that brought
you into being.
imagine for a second, sister, that
you are not just a body.
you are a collection of synapses
and bacteria, a walking planet.
and inside, did you know, sister, that you are
layers of all the things? like
sandstone and mudstone, layered and
eroded, layered and
pieces of fossils are your very
these tools, this dust that sits within you.
don’t you know you’ve always had
everything you needed?