I Am Thirsty Now

A woman is lying on the ground.
She can’t get up.
I think she will pull me down
into the earth.
I run,
I run from the earth.

My mother is lying on the ground.
She is sleep.
She is darkness.
She is tears.
She sucks the world into her belly
and it never comes out.
I run,
I run from my mother.

The ancestors are sitting in the corner
drinking wine.
They sing me songs of grief and joy
in an ancient language
my skin understands.
I do not want to go towards the earth.
The earth is sprinkled with their blood.
I run,
I run from their song.

Their arms are heavy and slow.
I think they want to put me in a box
and bury me beside them.
I become fast and light.
I run. I run. I grow wings. I fly.

Her arms were heavy and slow.
But they were arms that held,
that pinned me to one place
long enough to be loved

and the earth was a hill
we rolled down and down
and laughed at the tumble of our senses
and the earth
was my grandmother’s garden
where I picked raspberries
for the raspberry pie.

I am tired now.
Look at me:
I can’t even keep a single plant alive.
I walk on rubber,
watch landscapes on TV.
How long it’s been since I went outside.

I am thirsty now.
I cry when I see the men
dancing in a circle.
These are my people.
I long for them,
for the line of meaning
of bread
of hands
stretching back through time.

I am lying on the ground.
I am thirsty now
for a drink of that wine.

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3 thoughts on “I Am Thirsty Now

    • Thanks, Christine! This poem was prompted by my own experience of running from the things which are my roots, the things I come from, my “earth”. I would like to work with this further, redraft it, explore the material a little more. But it felt like a good opportunity to get something down on paper, to make a start.

      Liked by 1 person

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