You. love yourself: i bleed every month. but do not die. how am i not magic. 5 poems by #NayyirahWaheed #BlackLivesMatter #ValentinesDay

i am mine.
before i am ever anyone else’s.

i fell apart many times.
so.
what does that say about me
besides
i live through
wars.

if
the ocean
can calm itself,
so can you.
we
are both
salt water
mixed with
air.

sometimes
the beauty of my people
is
so
thick and intricate.
i spend days
trying
to undo my eyes
so
i can sleep.

she asked ‘you are in love, what does love look like’ to which i replied ‘like everything i’ve ever lost come back to me.

Nayyirah Waheed