poetry from another dimension

jai ma

I remember a lifetime
a billion years before
or maybe more
draped in a chaise lounge
in a mansion
way up the hill
licking lips and
eating cake;
with white cream filing
and a white curlicue
on top

the magical cake
never went dry
no matter
how long
it sat

Gazing at painted toenails
brushing crumbs off my lily white
dozed and ate
dozed and ate
dozed and ate

as servants brought
more cakes

falling into a deep deep sleep
a languid torpor
and dark
no dreaming
about the huddled hungry masses crying out
at the foot of
my isolated peak

Waking later
a lifetime later
or maybe more
amidst concrete sidewalks
and burned out buildings
no memory
not a wisp
of recollection
of the being i had been
or how I had arrived here

immersed in a sea of
brown and black skin
the mountain peak transformed
into a raft
drifting in the ocean of humanity

I did exactly what you would do,
I think

I took shelter
planted a garden
and found a friend
in my case
a wildebeest
with four tiny paws
and a tail
or maybe he was just a kitten
i don’t know

I learned from my neighbors
in their skins of brown and black
the arts of survival
on land composed of deep green earth
rather a mound composed of the backs
of others
a land where an everlasting cake
was a frivolous thing
and there are children to love and
promises to keep

versatility arose in me
and so did a sense of
responsibility towards my neighbors
those with skins of brown and black
and in between and covered with fur
and scales
and feathers
the days of lounging on the chaise
with nothing to do but eat cake
long gone
and very much forgotten
there was no mirror
in which to see my lily white skin

The change began as a trickle
and then a wave
first the beings who arrived from the other lands
took a parking space i’d had for years
planted a meter on it
and charged me money
that which had belonged to no one
they took
as their own

they took our smartest children
and implanted them
with the virtues
(or so it was assumed)
of everlasting cupcakes
straight lines
and the wearing
of ties

prefabricated nooses

in case,
just in case, mind you
those children got out of line

And so the conquest of my people
ear placed to the concrete
i no longer heard
dancing feet and congo drums
only jackhammers
and the cries of a dying culture

the insurance companies
charged us more to live
theft, they said
as they cited statistics
but we knew
our children had stopped stealing
with those nooses around
their necks
our village was being looted
by the ones who were charging us
even as they took the words out of our mouths
and the songs out of our hearts

somehow, somehow
i fell into a deep deep sleep
this time full of fear and agitation
flames licking the corners of
my burning mind
i awoke to screaming sirens
the sounds of shattering glass
and the smells of sizzling skin
roasting in
those now, very real,
burning flames

My brown brothers and sisters were hungry
they needed those cakes

And so it went
waking and dreaming
and back and forth
for a million years
backward and forward
or maybe more
and then
i woke up
knowing not what color i was
nor what tribe
I belonged to

and I saw
that there was nothing
that i could do
to end this cycle of suffering
one on top
and then the other
endless revolution

so i sat
and i dreamed of love
i dreamed of love
I dreamed of love
and evolution
and planted a seed
to see a world
where the ambassador of self conceit and self deprecation
passion and anger
seeds of greedy desires
a world where the demons of too much
and too little
were eradicated
where love is victorious
in the form of a goddess
a tiger
and the walls between the haves and the have nots
have been replaced by
a chain of linked hands
lifting us
up, together


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