How long will you occupy the space
b e t w e e n
my inhalations and exhalations?
Flashes of bliss and anguish
Filtered through eyes wide aberrations of you
I feel now as I felt then
b e t w e e n
a whimper and a moan
I wish to swallow
But unactualized moments are lodged in my throat
I’m always left with the aftertaste of a love unfurled
I don’t mind the chase
But I never catch more than my own tail
I tell tall tales to myself with my tongue stuck behind my teeth
It seems this Love was not constructed for the meek
It seems this Love was not constructed for the bold
I wish not to asphyxiate on the greatest lie ever told
I wish only for the cleansing breath of catch and release
I wish only for FINALITY to grant me peace
I wish only to breathe again with ease
About the author...
Tarnynon (Ty-yuh-nuh) Onumonu was born and raised in the Jeffery Manor neighborhood on the southeast side of Chicago, IL and is extremely proud of and humbled by her southside citizenship and West African lineage. Birthed from a Liberian mother and Igbo father whose families have both experienced extensive war trauma, she has been endowed with a diasporic experience in joy and pain that is atypical of most Americans. She draws from this experience to produce poetry, which is both specific in its autobiographical nature as well as global in its subject matter of love, trauma and disorientation over the span of time and the reach of Western colonization and global Black femme cultural experience. She is currently producing a memoir chronicling her experiences with second generation trauma of genocide as well as laying the groundwork for a poetry mixtape. She placed 2nd in the annual Guild Complex Gwendolyn Brooks Open Mic Awards.