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poem | mother tongue

Updated: Nov 4, 2021

The words of my people are in me

though I don’t know how

to say them fluidly

just yet

my mind tries to formulate a plan

to capture them

it hasn’t worked

and maybe it’s not a thing to be caught

maybe it’s a feeling

an embodied being

an integrated self

trusting instead of trying

being instead of reaching

the words of my Ancestors

get caught in my throat

fear of sounding foolish

fear of not being understood

I haven’t found the words yet

maybe I’ll give up searching

and let them find me instead


Video taken on xʷməθkʷəy̓əm, Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh Territory,

May 2021

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