By Sojourner Ahebee

Ask any Sikh why your hair grows
and he'll tell you he doesn't know
but you should trust in God
that it does. I comb her hair
hoping this mixture of Dixie Peach and creeds
will soak into my palms
and make me holy.

Her locks of grey
are a journey of great migrations
and faith.
She’s had the fingers
of a white man weaved
through her plait,
coarse and resilient,
cause he wanted to know
if her skin was fibbing
and which section he should place her in
while her stomach,
hungry for coleslaw
and trees that don’t slump
from the weight of bodies,
remembered yesteryear’s lynching
and the penis they stuck
in that young boy’s mouth
while he hung like rotted figs,
but her stomach only grumbled
afraid of making too much noise.

Yet she still believed in the sky.

Prayer is a distant affair;
my knees against floor,
palms kissing,
is my lie to God
she can only suck through straws
for breath now,
and has only the scent of her Magnolia
and my whispers
for company.

The blinking of her eyes
is poetry speaking
because I tend to whisper
Langston in the ears of
a grandmother almost gone
and since she couldn’t answer with her lips
her pupils did the talking.