I know my suffering is loud but my skin
is light as sky and I was told to let it

open doors, shake hands, slip the cover
over their eyes, so I could be. Free

is not a negro doused in white, blanched,
bleached, and sent down the path. Free

almost never means alive, so please try—
I’m asking for help. Whose fist is in my ribs

at which gate. What color is the moon.
How do I move the line when it is buried

in the earth. Why do you think my face
is the face you think you see. In the earth.

In the water. Where can I rest my feet.
My hands. My tongue. My lungs. My eye.