Poetry Archive

If a Tree Falls in the Forest

I am loved in cold mornings and pursed lips, 
her feet callous and bleed over cracked hands           (spill the beans) 

my mother hugs me at the departure gate, snitches on 
herself in a hitched breath goodbye her lips won’t part for. 

one day I ask if it’s me: my fresh mouth, 
hellraisin, how daddy spit me out so himlike? 

or the way her momma loved in clean 
sheets and fried bologna sandwiches? 

how I seen auntie chuck plates and flip 
the spades table, but she always cry silent? 

I am loved in graveshifts and new clothes 
and whatchu want from the stores 

and I almost said it back but 
would she even hear me?

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Filed under: Poetry Archive


"Edythe Rodriguez is a Philly-based poet who studied Africology and Poetry at Temple University. As an African Renaissance writer, her poetry is a call for aggressive healing, protection of our African selves, and sankofa. She is a fellow of The Watering Hole and her work is either published or forthcoming in Obsidian, Call and Response Journal, and Bayou Magazine."