…Then Fall, Caesar

Popping pills regularly, faithfully
Saw the word, still didn’t believe
Can’t be me
Not now, not yet
Took another test
Damn…
But, everything happens for a reason right?
Alright
*deep breath*
We’re doing this
Not 100% sure of the whys, whats, or hows but
Here we are
Maybe we can celebrate?
Maybe, before someone snatches the joy and makes a mockery
Tells my story before I can
Exploits my story for their gain
Alright
*deep sigh*
I guess that’s the price I pay
Find joy, find joy, find the happy, find the promise
Hold onto it
We talked about it
Again, and again, and again
Went back and forth, then settled in
So this is how our lifelong story begins?
Alright
*deep breath*
Two?
Still recovering from the idea of one
Identical?
…fun
One for You, one for me
Maybe pretty girls with afro curls
Maybe brave boys with afrocentric toys
Alright
*clutches stomach*
Too early
Not now, not yet
Out-of-town for work, have to call for help
It’s an emergency. “Just breathe”
But they don’t see me
I’m a Black woman, not human
I’m a broken vessel
Worthless to them if I can’t produce their labor
I’m in early labor
They’re leaving my body
I’m losing my souls
She scrapes around and looks over to her accomplice
“I think some product got on the floor”
“Alright. I’ll clean it up.”
*wipes tears*
A minute passes
Then twenty
And at forty-five they come and confirm
Part of me is no longer alive
“I think we got most of it up, if you want to get up”
Where are my clothes?
“Clean yourself up”
I’m just a Black mama struggling… to sit up
*deep breath*
Fast forward to the inquiries
The well wishes and questions
The out-of-network medical bills
How much? For what?
I can’t afford this
Haven’t I paid enough?
No.
I still owe.
*writes check*
It’s gonna be tough, but that’s behind me
I’m alright, it’s gonna be tight
I don’t need much; I have food, friends, and Love
I’ll make it
“Where’s my car?”
Fuck.
When it rains it pours, but
Everything happens for a reason
Humbled, in need
Reach out, as I so often preach
Relief in less than twenty minutes (“Do unto others…”)
“Thank you! Stop… I have enough”
Delete, delete, delete
Five hours later
No this nigga didn’t
*clutches fist*
Here we go again
A chance to go all in
I always hated that bitch
What she did to…was wrong
You reap what you sow
Now you begging us for help!
Hated so much, I deserved to lose two lives
Despised so much, calls for me to die
Years of anger directed at someone never met
Who cares about growth, they won’t let you forget
Anyone ask what… did to…?
Forget it. Believe the lies; they’re easier than the truth
Sowing…what?
Hausmuva calls it “social death”
Says people crave it, want to see others “fall”
Want to see me broken?
Maybe I should have livestreamed when they wiped my babies up off the floor and threw them in the trash
But I been trash, right?
Right. Nothing redeemable. Never helped anyone. Selfish. Greedy.
*silence*
My silence is your superpower
Because if they knew…
Never mind, it ain’t about that
Helped so many, but where they at?
Guess the kitchen got too hot
I been asked for a lot
“You give too much,” He said
And He’s right
Half my life devoted to what…?
Developing a superhuman strength to mask what you don’t see?
I’m real
Ain’t never claimed to be perfect
Mirrors all around us
When they don’t like what they see
They focus on me
Hypervisibility
Exposed
Targeted
Abused
Every day for years. Silence.
Doesn’t matter
Enemy of my “enemy”, and all that… right?
Nigga don’t even like each other
But that’s none of my business
FJ, the Great Unifier
None of this matters
I’m hurting
I’m in pain
And it’s what you wanted to see
It’s what you’ve been waiting for…years
Cuz you never liked, never met, never held my hand
You got it, right here, right now
You get to see me fall
You get to see me die
You won…right?
Hope you sleep well tonight.