My Voice Walks Into a Room

My voice walks into a room.
I was going to start with hello? It’s me… by
way of introduction but
then I realized Adele already took that and now
you’re all singing and I
don’t have Adele’s voice and that’s not the kind of voice I’m talking about, and –

Let’s start over.

My voice walks into a room.
I’m sorry – I need to apologize first.

I’m sorry you find my words powerful,
that they hit you in your heart,
that they move you to tears,
that you love them anyway.

I’m sorry I write too much truth and not enough lies.
I’m sorry I can’t write cherry sno-cone on a hot summer day.
My writing has always been too wild blackberry:
warm, black, and full on top but red underneath,
it packs a punch that will hit you
just when you think it will go down easy.
I’m sorry you can’t read me like a comfort novel.
My words skirt the fringes of comfortable
like watching a storm blow through,
and I’m sorry if I leave you in the rain.

My voice walks into a room.
Enters gently almost
unnoticed, my voice
never was good at jokes but
can kill with some sarcasm.
My voice walks into a room and
she’s quiet. Feels tight in her cage of throat and skin, she
splatters herself on paper.
Always more at home in two-dimensional black-and-white, my voice is
alive in sleeping serpent scrawl of pen,
my voice is truth-filled righteous banter
is wisdom
is untapped

So find the voice that comes from the deepest part of you.
The one that knows your terrible scars
and loves you endlessly.
Find the voice that speaks without apology –
all lemon-sour beautiful,
rain-through-the-weekend amazing,
we need a voice that raises hell if we’re
going to see ourselves through it.

In astronomy, natural objects in space are called heavenly bodies.
Although no one says it
the only thing keeping us here is the pull of the
revolution of our heavenly body.
We crack under both weight and
weightlessness, like my voice enters a room and it is revolution, like
your voice enters a room and it is revolution, and
we’ll push and pull and cycle together as we
quake and turn and know
is the key for our survival
is making it home when they tried to end you
is speaking it all in love, anger, fear, so–

— to all the words I did not speak: forgive me.
I spent so long running, speaking with bladed tongue
cutting myself to size, wondering why I did not answer: body forgive me.
I let ghosts fill the empty spaces, wondered if
impossibility was the only way to love myself, wondered
if the only way I could be small
enough was by not
speaking: spirit forgive me.

Today, my voice enters a room.
Today, I am creation, creator, created;
architect of spirit:
today, my name is Woman.
Today, my name is Strong.
Today, my name is Compassion, is Power, is Poet-
I build myself in expanding rings, rippling out towards forever,
you will hear the names I speak, truth-
creation is here, written, possible, these
spaces are not empty:
when I speak
I hear only my voice.

When I speak
I hear only my voice.


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