that’s why my favorite picture of myself

is a mystery

straight-backs in ball shorts in a body

that day I got to choose

assignment was assumption

I make my beauty…

the best thing about worlds is that they are built

can be over again

timelines archived and old days spent in favor of new

i’ve got new days and new…

dripping wet

i am a soup of myself when you hold me

searching for resting place where the living is easy

where the aches in me are hushed by your fingers in my righteous places please find them all

you hush with a sustenance that contorts to fit me tracing my body: a seasoned tailor

a reprieve of safety dare I say I like when you turn me into forest or a church?: choose either holy place and sing me prostrate

you named me sweetness

i burrow into your neck to soak in the moment making sure we are both…

be responsible for your embrace

of me

i want to make it easy

there is enough tough to go around

here i am

folding for you

do you see it?

you are not afraid

to be seen living

and not that regular living shit

the farce that makes puppets of human flesh

you don’t fool anyone about what it takes…

a “good morning”

to my plants and a walk

to cry on the yoga mat

a practice, yes

lately a praise

an ode

a wet awe

to this body that…

are you aching with


in your ribs

are you full of joy

at yourself


and always

I interned at the Schomburg Center for a summer as a senior in college. I walked to the center every day. Every day a group of Black men was sitting close to each other. I could tell they were kin. They weren’t touching but they did seem bound up together. Apart but one on top of the other all the same. Mangled together beautifully. Not sure of top from bottom.

My friends would speak to them. I let the others’ salutations handle my own. The mangled men noticed.

I think a lot about how we are all bound up together…

how have we not fallen into each other

aloud revolutions of earth

you seem a wonderous revelation

a towering of life

in a valley of death

an upright unabashed lily

did I do right by you?

by loving myself?

too absolutely too loudly

my throat a trumpet a dungeon-shaking mechanism

and I had more love shored up

heavy genius love…

LM Spence

Sometimes I like it here. Sometimes I like it better in my head.

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