she is light, opens tunnels up with her brightness
she is hope, full of it
her eyes see beyond the black and white
she sees color
life in a dead tree
withering away but with her
birds chirp and perch on new branches of her
heart, she is the pillar of our society
backbone of the air we
her lungs give us oxygen
her lips are the raindrops that pitter patter
the pattern of her wind blowing
through the leaves, whispering
a soft song
lingering in the palms, her sweet melody
fills the world
the taste of the ocean when she
laps up the sea shores
painting the earth with the waves of
her breath
‘What a wonderful world’
whistling in the
heat of the sun, her face glows
the yellow finds her darkness
and the stars illuminate her smile
she glistens in the moonlight
eyes water
clouding up
her vision becomes foggy
she drops happiness
lands on dust filling it with life
she is love, carves hearts and molds them
she is earth, clay versatile and deep
deep in her centre
she boils with appreciation for all she gets to be
and all we get to be are her admirers
all we get to be are her admirers
all we should be are her admirers
pamper her with gifts, because she is a queen
crown her with all her jewels
let them sit on her head
they are not ours for the taking
let them be where they may
they are not ours for the faking
we validate our existence with her possessions
it is not mine
it is not yours
we validate our being with her belongings
but our being is nothing without her
she does not belong to us
we are hers
we are not ours


go to it


I was sitting by the fire with my niece (she turned 7 months recently)
both of us, staring into the flame burning bright.
Our eyes transfixed,
the warmth glowing off our brown faces,
her babble hushed by the orange monster that engulfed the wood right in front of us.
It was like magic,
raw brilliance.
Her back pressed up against my chest,
she stretched out her right hand
opened up her fist
showed the palm of her hand to the monster and held it there for a few seconds.
Then, brought her fingers together –
almost as if she was trying to catch the warmth,
save the raw brilliance,
keep it for herself.
When I was young (around her age now) I burnt my fingers trying to ‘catch warmth’
except, where she only took a part of it, I felt the need to take all of it.
My curiosity got the better of me and I still have the scars to prove it.
I guess I just wanted, for a second
like she did,
to experience the magic,
the power,
the strength,
the raw brilliance.
Greatness is, sometimes, a thing to stumble upon by virtue of curiosity about the unknown,
the new,
the brilliance right before you that people treat as a normality.
that thing that’s got your eye,
go to it!
Even if you get burned,
the scars will be a reminder of your bravery,
your magic,
your power,
your strength,
the raw brilliance brewing inside of you.
So go to it.


in the lonely hour, what ugly do you unmask?
what ill intentional summonings are your souls inhabitants?
is there room in your spirit for a black that’s muddied with gold?
do you have it in you, every night your heart gets weak, to whisper a serenity prayer to the darkness –
let it seep into your soul so deep your darkness becomes glorious?
is there a heavy tone inside you that’s holy?

i know you were taught that the devil incarnates from the absence of
but only one is deficiency
only one abstracts
tints & tilts
shifts focus & deceives
turn the lights off
rebirth must begin with death
some truths reside in the absence of light
and can’t be exposed by bringing them to it
but only in following the swallow of the night
heave and weighted by all that’s blamed on it

open, loving

clenched fingers, knuckles outward, soft inward
we live like fists
this life isn’t about winning
heart drenched in pain
soul poured into affection
vulnerable and exposed
awkward, silence filled chasms of quirky,
we don’t live in mistake enough
don’t live in unplanned enough for spontaneous to be warm embrace of bed,
here’s my palm
open, willing,
just grab on.


First day of school, i remember seeing boys and girls flooding into open gates dressed in identical white shirts, peeking through red sweaters
some boasting jackets they had on, on top of them
no doubt because mothers, like mine, were convinced we’d be climbing an ice mountain that morning
in the north pole’s eternal winter
but even under all that wool, I could feel goosebumps forming on my skin
my teeth began to chatter
huge moth like creatures in my tummy started to come out of their cocoons.
and I imagined them as I sat in the car, staring out the window
saw them lightly flutter newly found wings, slowly embracing new ability
as they mastered skill, like wild bulls chasing after red cape, they flapped about uncontrollably with dumbo ear sized wings
then, without warning, rushing up through my body out came all my breakfast and there, on the floor of the car, lay my hot chocolate, honey infused pancake mess
as mummy turned to me, I could already feel tingling sensation on my bottom from slap I would surely receive
ashamed of what I’d done, a single tear fell down side of my face,
I could taste bile on my tongue as words fell out my mouth,,
“I’m sorry mummy”.
I remember apology being enough
mummy, without speaking a word, stepped out of the car, opened my door for me
wiped the sides of my mouth
and ushered me out with forgiveness.
I shuffled to the edge of the seat, grabbed my backpack, jumped out onto squishy wet grass and felt the moths settle
felt fear settle
and let excitement, set in.

When I was 5, I thought I could do anything,
be anything
and I was convinced that I was superman.

Between 6 and 14 I went from swinging on monkey bars, running around in adventureland, and playing bano with boys
to singing omina, playing hop scotch, and trying on make up with girls
my worries shifted from how long play time would last to
how I could make boys think I am the sun
whether my sweat smelled bad
how short my shorts were, and whether the boys noticed
I wondered (sometimes), when appearance started to matter so much,
thought about how I just wanted to run around in adventureland again with a cape over my shoulders and S on my chest
wondered why daddy was looking at other women like he should be looking at mummy
fantasised about my wedding to ice cool Michael Moon
wondered why my parents fought so much, and weren’t speaking to each other except about us
I drew my wedding dress, picked what song I’d walk down the aisle in, wrote my childrens names into stars
and dreamed of the day I’d become another’s

At 15, I learned that the world is dark, and I have darkness in me.
broken and lustful, I am sinner.
the devil rests in my loins waiting to match me up with his demons
demons who roam when the sun’s up – kiss the sunset and dance dusk in.
I learned that we are made from the same dust, you and I
made to do good and be good
but we are all tortured souls,
so sometimes, good people do bad things, and bad people do good things,
which means maybe I’ve been living the wrong way, loving the wrong way.
maybe love isn’t enough,
and faith is weak
but hope,
hope whispers in dark corners, drawing out stardust and blowing into existence some type of fiery shine that sparks redemption
the kind that saves – and comes in the form of blue eyed, pale skinned, long blonde wavy haired – man
but what does white Jesus know about my melanated life?
I learned darkness is considered curse
my sun burnt skin isn’t beautiful to everyone
and my history books lied to me
told me my suffering was past – oppression defeated,
but I – woman – African – have no claim to earth from which I came
no claim to my body
I was created to act as vessel for life but never to command it
never complete
always waiting for completion by man
I am object to be bought, traded, used, abused, spat upon, groped, raped, ignored, hushed, silenced
with voice locked in stomach
tongue scratching at throat to speak truth
truth which will not free, but confine me to slut, mad, whore, witch, nameless,
my children will never have my name.
heartache is more than not getting to go for that party all my friends get to go to
friendships aren’t forever
love is complicated – painful even
pain is sometimes relief –
razor blades replace teddy bears blunts become crutch to lean on
earth to stand on
standing is all I have heart to do,
me is all I have strength to be so
maybe that can set me free

18, I learned about hippies, vagabonds, and free spirits
mine found solace in listless winds
life in the ether – flowed just like water, delicate and powerful,
her mighty storms and floods wasting away fragile fickle things
these bodies we worship – are temporary
but this spirit is forever
existing in everything,
I am consciousness realised.
untethered from darkness, my spirit convinced my body it was feather –
weightless enough to float with clouds
light enough to feel warmth of the sun caress my soul – the air painting sky beneath me liberty
and my body was away.
away from hatred and fear – hurting and pain
clouds made me child again.
hope was no longer alien to me,
and open sky coloured the depths of me

I turned 21 a little over a month ago, and I’m learning there is little about life that is simple
there is beauty in lonely, and this year, I get to love me
live with ugly out,
beautiful shining
unapologetically raw and vulnerable to a life of uncertainty
I’m learning that I am enough
and other, is only opportunity to improve upon my oneness.

21 will be a beautiful mess of wonder.

24 cut me open
where 23 was cocoon and my spirit raw but protected
by ignorance or
the lack of understanding – a hide
24 is the shell being depleted by
here, in this raw – exposed,
I feel free
& trapped by
my feelings
a slave to them
no longer hidden
no choice but honesty
to guide living


forget everyone else for a second
remember your heartbeat inside your chest
license to breathe & be pumping rhythm through your veins
remember love
for self
forgiveness wrapped in cherry blossoms sprinkled over you for never being that person you dreamed of becoming
forgiveness for trying to convince yourself that you are, should be, anything other than flesh and bone, dancing to the beat of your drum
then let yourself dance.


i will fall for you, hard
crack ribs and give you heart
bury you in caring
hand you happiness and make you joy

i promise to sing for you
will your bad days out of existence and whisper the melody of the heavens to remind you that I will care for you, but Her will care for you more
i will guide you to Her altar and help you offload the burdens you couldn’t lift off alone
help you set them at Her feet
we will stand there, hand in hand, and dance our weightless heads off our shoulders
dance with the light and love of God flowing through us

and i promise to sit with you, where vulnerable meets mask
this place will not be safe
my words will not protect you but my naked will comfort you
so i will leave my ugly out and place it next to yours
name it perfection as black and colour it truth
there is no hurting too foreign for my taste buds
no sound too shrill for forgiveness
and when we say things we didn’t mean to each other
there will be mirror in apology
breath in relief – acceptance
and water in rebirth

i will love you with an everlasting love