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Week 6 “Why not go toward the things I love?”

Poems written by Untold Stories poets in response to the prompt “Why not go toward the things I love?” from Grief Work by Natalie Díaz.

A Movement

- Erica B. Edwards

Move toward the discomfort

Toward the wild ride

of silences

And tantrums

And judgement

Toward more conversations

that break open your heart

And rupture the platitudes shaping your bubble

Light the short fuse

More temperamental than ever before

And watch it explode

Before unfolding the posture of a peaceful warrior

Lean into the discomfort

And hold on to the people you love

In all of their brokenness

Through all the burdens we carry alone


Legs planted still in the uncertainty of uncertainty

Trusting that everything is occurring

as it should

While you quake and (re)member to breathe

Even in the face of death

And if we cannot bear it

If the tears well but don’t fall

If the anger seethes down your throat

And lodges in the pit of your stomach

You may excuse yourself

To walk a body’s length alone

Although your back aches

And your hips are stiff

And you must stop to catch your breath

While everyone around you runs

The pose remains elusive

Nothing looks the way it does on TV

There may be no serendipitous ending

No triumphant, self-actualized protagonist

Whose quest brings fantastic clarity

And Christ-like triumph

But instead

Movement toward

New discomforts

New tensions to till the earth with

To create the nutrients made possible through decay

What beautiful ugliness

Exists in discomfort

What beautiful ugliness

Exists in discomfort



- Ugbaad Keynan

I don't have that right

It was never given to me

By those who made me

and through that creation own me.

I'm bound by chains of maternal love and paternal expectations

But also by culture and religion

And my sex and race.

The history of my life reads like a tragedy to some.

Of loves lost time and time again

Of love becoming weaponized and used against me

Of love that consumes all and leaves me with nothing else.

I've learned to sweeten my tea with the crushed dreams and shattered hopes

I've accumulated over the years.

A small comfort.

I'm a willing captor and active participant in the entrapment I exist in.

I've come to the pitiful conclusion that I prefer to live in this

Sheltered state

Instead of continuing to go towards the things I love.

It's really the only option

When your heart has been broken so many times

And there is nothing left to break.


How Did I Forget Interdependence?

- Desiraé Simmons

Isn't it heavy?

Well, I'm strong so I can carry it.

Can you really only be three?

What will you be forced to carry?

A whole armful.

Where are you going to take it?

Everywhere I go.

Why do you keep adding more?

Because more can fit.

When will you know it's enough?

Oh, it'll get so heavy, I'll know.

Then what will you do?

Ask for help of course.

What does that look like?

I'll say, "it's too hard."

If it's really as simple as that, why not go toward the things I love?

What are the things you love?

The simple things like,

A smile of gratitude or an offer of support.

Why is that so heavy?

I guess it's a weight I place on myself.

Do you think you're alone?

Sometimes...though I know I'm not.

So, now what are you going to do?

I'm going to cast out and let the ocean of love buoy me.

Can I come too?

Of course, it is you who showed me the way.


How does freedom feel like while walking my path?

- Erika Murcia

It feels like an abundance of love

But don't get me wrong

here I am not talking about

profitable empty "love"

here I am contesting extractive toxic

practices that deprive me from freedom

It feels like living in my wholeness

Which in turn calls me

to the embodiment of

cleansing my spirit

so I can stand in acceptance of all

What I've been

What I am and

What I could become

It feels like the ecstasy of being in movements

Because pure love

is an ongoing healing practice for reclaiming home

in which care is collective

in which community is at the center

in which nourishment depends on


Coexisting with one another

Living with the conviction that change happens

It feels like the orgasmic power of creativity

Kissing Mother Earth

As a vow to her in humility

For breastfeeding me during a lifetime

Holding my womb

With a soft gentle touch

In appreciation for her power

In connecting me with my roots

Salsa dancing

As I welcome our ancestral wisdom

there is freedom in growing corn

our gift from the goddesses

there is inner freedom


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