Holding me back
Propelling me forward?
Measuring my progress
Reminding me of missed opportunities?
A rite of passage
A gift drowned in the middle passage?
A lost visage of my lost cultural heritage?
How do I know when I am a woman?
When does a man know to begin to desire me?
How do I name my children so that
the stars hear and record their birth?
how will I know when he is a man?
By his strong back?
Puffed up chest?
Maybe if he is never a man,
I won't lose him to
Or, is a bullet in the
its own milestone?
Saying, "STOP RIGHT THERE!
YOU'VE GONE FAR ENOUGH!
GROWN FAR TOO MUCH!"
Can't let you exceed the
length of your chains
the reach of my fear
Can't let you rise away from here
like the sun
and uplift your people with you
Markers of time passed