August 1, 2016

A Poem by Lakesha Landrum: "What do you see?"

Lakesha Landrum lives in Atlanta, GA.


What do you see?

Do you see my eyes flash with strength, determination, and hope?
Are my eyes filled with tears as I cry from frustrations, sadness and loneliness?
Are you watching these eyes?
Yes, they can do more than see.
They can sparkle, they can dance. They can look forward and beyond
Do you see my face perfectly poised?
The frown and the smile lines I cover, my lipstick just so
Am I smiling, happy, sad, anger, all?
Are you looking at my lips?
Wanting to feel their softness on yours?
Not hearing the words I say?
Or the knowledge I speak
Are you seeing my nose?
As I inhale in and exhale out
I not only can smell, I breathe
What do you see?
Are you watching my pulse dance around in my throat, longing to place a kiss there
It’s my life force that beats
It races with each new excitement.
These shoulders are straight
No, not to thrust out my chest
But to bare the weight of this world
And so I can stand taller and feel stronger
Are you looking at the way my shirt clings to my chest?
Do you know a heart beats there?
Full of longing, shattered dreams and regrets.
Are you wondering how my skin will feel in your hand?
I can see your fist clench to keep from touching me
This skin of mine does more than just hold me in
It bears the scars of years of work and dedication
Do you know my arms can carry weights?
Not just for lifting but holding, comforting, caressing.
The fingers you are grasping with yours are talented.
They can write, play a tune, hold a brush, and help a child.
They can plant a garden, causing roses to flower and bloom
And at the same time brush the tear from an eye with merely a flick
What do you see?
My waist which can spanned by the girth of your hands
It’s not for your eyes, it’s so I can move as I dance freely
Are you looking at me bending over, these clothes covering me snug?
The hips where you rest your hands are not just meant for you.
They carry the curve of my sway and they can dance with a small one
With a mother’s rhythm.
The thighs are thighs
Gap or no
But they make me feel womanly
And so do my knees
My legs can be long or they may be short
But they help me travel when you are not around
They kick the dust up and my feet stomp it down
And they keep me moving along
In completion I am human
But in whole I am woman
I am mother
I am wife
I am infinitely more
Than what you see.

~Lakesha Landrum

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