A thousand-people loving me could
not undo the onion-layers of damage
done of my tribe not loving me back
and holding me close and cherishing
me and me clinging onto them for my
lifetime. All my life those in-the-family
way have been a disabling vortex.
Flush with flux. Determined with
their own crooked little hearts. Still, to
this day, these ghosts have to be
forgiven. Oh, perhaps they’re giving.
Their children brave, bright and
resilient. Salty-licked, stars every one.
Northern Americas every single
one. They are holistic winners. Sophisticates.
Wealthy pioneers. They’re just,
but they’re missing something.
They’re missing the blank slate
of forest-schooled-me. I live in
the same way the sea lives. I have
the exact perspective of a piece
of driftwood on the divine beach.
You’re not one of us, they sing in unison.
Can’t get that cartoon tune of hurt
out of the inside of my head. There’s
just no love. No forgiveness. I’m
damned if I do and damned if I don’t.
You’ll survive, someone screams
in the silence of my bedroom where
I’m dreaming of Parisian rooftops.
I watch cooking shows on television
until the early hours of the morning.
Thinking of nothing. Thinking of everything.
And this flux, this inscrutable vortex,
whatever ‘it’ is, I blame the name-
and-shame game of madness. It loiters
like a vagrant. I give love my all
but it is not enough. I yearn for it.
For its unfolding spring harvest and bounty but still,
But still, they shout and point and stare.
You’re not one of sacred us. This trust.
Not quite enough. Not enough
meat to me. I am posed though.
Half of all-whole-me expected
Danced to this cartoon all my life. All my life.
ABIGAIL GEORGE is a South African blogger, poet, short story writer, and aspirant young adult novelist. She briefly studied film and television production at the Newtown Film and Television School in Johannesburg. She has been published in various anthologies, numerous times in print in South Africa, and online in e-zines based in Australia, Finland, the UK, the United States, India and Ireland and across Africa from Istanbul, Turkey to Nigeria.