|my sixteen-year-old eyes open
the absence of sharp objects,
my innermost thoughts
I step off the elliptical daze,
the reality that I’m still here,
a faded blue gown covers
a body that was intentionally
how to store violence, how
Linda says something in group,
while I marvel at the hybridity
once singular in its purity
whole, complex, and replete:
and grapefruit pucker,
between Japanese plum and
descendant of black x logan x rasp
fruit form but shun its human shape.
my father’s fear of hybridity is
John tells us he is a triple threat,
to utter words with confidence,
sing, nor dance, nor act
I want to tell John he is lucky,
the triple threat Dalit women
of poverty, gender bias,
Susan screams at the trees
room. while her words settle
coming and going from this plane
that in the absence of obituaries,
they asked only one question:
Pam says something in group,
mouth, as I realize that I
that life is only time passing
to white ceiling, white walls,
a safe space where I can share
with clipboards and strangers.
awaken to muted sounds and
that somehow, I must march on.
a body with flesh markers,
omitted, a body that knows
to live with the unacceptable.
begins to rock, cry into herself,
of fruit, this taking of something
and combining it to make a new
Minneola of tangerine shape
Pluot of blasphemous marriage
Armenian apricot, and Boysenberry,
berries. we fawn over amalgam in
my body has always known this.
shrapnel lodged in my brain.
and I wonder what it feels like
to have talent in spades, but I cannot
(unless it is to act as insider).
that we are lucky, to not live with
face: the inescapable burden
and caste discrimination.
framed by the window of the craft
on the floor, I remember that the
was different once,
the Greeks did not write tributes.
did the person live with passion?
then stuffs it back into her small
or none of this truly matters,
through this body for a while.