there are stories in the dirt.
everything which has ever drawn breath whispers its echoing aches
and ecstasy back to the dirt.
the more you break your fingernails. sift and dig, my eyelashes spellthewords,“I am still here.”
on ribs nsibidi rising on smoke tendrils,
adrinka blackened grill marked gourds,
heiroglyph harpists playing cedar plank salmon songs,
curl charred silk mazes between your Maize biting teeth pattering patois chickens with crimson coal applied like kohl to the inside of my eyelids in your fire pits
and backyard barbecues I spell,
why can’t you see me?”
the dirt only speaks the truth in tongues that were once in the mouths of others. to those who see alkali smells
with river silt scorched mouths.
it has been speaking… open wide.
I will pack your orifices with mud and rue laced salt. and light golden
seal them shut.
dry and harden, it will.
know my keloid lovely memories
these hard imagined futures
like itching amputated limbs ~ now. remember. now. goose bump spiculum burn ~ now. feel me. now tympanic buzz ~ now. remember. now.
I trip you. carry you. feed you. offer you
stories. dirt grows. what we know
is that nothing stays
the same. our ancestors
tell our children their history must be scraped from under their parent’s fingernails
lest they become infected when this present is scratched.