Toni Morrison died Monday...
|Fought my way, kicking and screaming
into her class; cutting the line unapologetically,
using whatever I could to beat
the deadline, the class full line.
That last seat was golden, a perch,
a birdbath full of elixir--
Breathed her words into consciousness.
Took notes when I could remember to write--
but her words were indelible; tattooed
into brain cells, inscribed into my being.
I exhaled language
turned on its ear, twisted upside down,
birthed into layers of myriad meanings--
soared through concrete
bashing my mind on fallen petals.
She pushed, never accepting anything
less than blood oozing
as if from paper cut slices in a soul.
Our choice, she said,
to learn and do and be--
or not. She had no patience for the knots
that stifled some. Small whisper of a smile
when she read spoke volumes.
And I learned.