Today being black was not a reason to die by its natural causes. What I mean is, no one tried to kill me today.

Ebony Stewart - “This Poem is About Joy” (WOWPS 2016)

Performing at the 2016 Women of the World Poetry Slam. Subscribe to Button on YouTube!

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how do you remember when your mind is intoxicated with the fog of amnesia?  they never taught me how to navigate the neoprene matrix of strange portraits holding pieces of shaded memories marginalized by defense mechanisms –

but what’s direction to a rag doll?  maybe the post-ruin eyes of an astronaut witnessing the earth shatter into 42 pieces from deep space.  and sure,

i could move my lips, but who cares?  obviously god doesn’t.

like the colors of the emotions that burn so bright
zooming into splices in the sequence of time leaving
me from the corner of my eyes

like bittersweet memories attempting to crawl out of
the shade of amnesia only to be greeted by the moon’s
evil smile.

maybe i was just a bad dream a fucking nightmare
washed with a romantic storm in love with a ghost

trying to merge obscure realities with the music
of freedom echoing from beyond the horizon but

(ghosts are real)

I always have cold hands.

Now, I’m no scientist, but I know a few things about human anatomy. Especially the heart and how blood flow works.

It starts in your right atrium, where deoxygenated blood flows into to get oxygen to deliver to the rest of the body. When that is full the blood goes through the tricuspid valve into the right ventricle where the blood receives oxygen. After that the blood is pumped from the right atrium to the pulmonary artery, where it is divided and sent to the right and left lungs. Then the oxygen rich blood returns to the left atrium where it is then pumped into the left ventricle through the mitral valve. When the left atrium is full, it squeezes the oxygen rich blood through the aortic valve into the aorta, which pumps blood throughout the rest of the body.

I also know a thing or two about love and how it is in fact intertwined with the literal heart in your chest.

Love is a process in which causes dopamine, adrenaline, and norepinephrine levels to increase. These are chemicals in the brain. Dopamine causes feelings of euphoria, while adrenaline and norepinephrine cause heart rates to speed up. When your heart rate speeds up, so does the pattern of the heart pumping blood through your body, causing things like sweaty palms and flushed cheeks.

But I don’t have sweaty palms. I have cold palms. Cold palms and cold fingers and cold hands.

Tj @white-little-liess
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