for kings, soldiers, babas, brothas and lions

dedicated to the fall of tkon

i have become
everything you've asked of me:

my hair is coiled
into beautiful roots...
i wear bright colors
long skirts
the copper bangles you like.

feed the babies vegetables and fruits
i grow with my own hands
and watch us all glow.

but you complain
if i cry;
deny my reason
if i reveal my heart.
i know the stories of our african kings just as you do
{i overlook your dismissal of the queens,
but whisper their stories to our daughter...}

no one cries for my deferred dreams
not even me...
maybe i need to release those backed up tears
when i hear a beautiful poem
or song
or when you hold me
...if you hold me.

i cannot help who i am.

is there a reason your heart
must remain locked away?

i love your mind,
but i also know you have a soul.
i glimpsed it when our daughter was born,
when our son took his first steps.

i'd like to get to know it.
but it never emerges for me.

because of the struggle.
because the people's pain trumps our own.
because i can take it.
because you're "over it."

i have become
everything you've asked of me.

but you never asked me
to be

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