howl (for fifth grade girls)

poetry

I don’t know what it is to speak up for myself or to really trust myself

I don’t know what the shape of my voice looks like.

I often wonder if this is the burden
Many young girls carry

I wonder if it could have gone another way when i was a kid.

I’m not trying to rewrite anything 
If imma be a wise old woman,
The story
Of how 
I became one’s not gonna be interesting if it don’t start with a little lost girl looking for herself

I’m actually wondering if
Girls
When they become women
If they
Ever do
Think about how they were raised with a fist pushed into the mouth

I mean, I knew some girls in school with a lotta sass
But
Sass could be identity crisis in disguise, no?

Black sass
Makes me proud
And introspective at the same time
Cause

Are you howlin cause you’re worthy or are you howlin cause you hurt?

It was never clear to me.

I’d like to professionally orchestrate
A collective howl
Rooted in self care
And a sturdy self knowledge

Cause I know
There are a lot of fifth grade little girls
That
Howl hurt
And some
That don’t howl at all.

(2016)

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