photo by @mareksminder
I want to know how to speak
my great great great great grand people’s tongue.
I want to speak it to them
like love being spoken into existence
on the days that are so still and warm
with lavender and sandalwood commingling
in the air when I feel them nearby.
I don’t know what they call our language.
I’ve never heard it and I never will.
It’s been erased. Our ties to each other
have been erased by colonization
and yet somehow I know them and they know me.
They know me and I know them.
I’ve never heard them and yet
I know how they sound
when they’re delighted and distressed,
how they sing to ease, to love, to warn,
how their voices fill a room.
I will never know our language
and yet I will always know it deep in my being,
how strongly it holds me
in a way that never lets me go.
Our language needs no words.
We are able to be here together
in the felt sense experience of the body
even though I’ll never know where we come from.
I call this a love language.
I call it belonging.
And I offer it to you
with each passing breath
received and released,
with each exchange of air
shared amongst us and I dedicate
it to those whose breath, whose land,
whose language, whose people were taken,
destroyed, who we breathe, live,
love, heal, and speak on behalf of
until the end of time.
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