napowrimo – niizhtana shi bezhig (twenty one)

the heat inside rises

the heat inside climbs

the heat inside combusts

the heat insides makes itself known

as i reach deep digging for those lost words

those words that are there i am certain

they say our blood knows

our blood remembers

so i reach out to a language but i am uncomfortable

like an awkward teen leaning up against a wall

watching everyone else speak with ease

and fluency

it comes easy when relationships exist with the land

with the people

with the families

it reminds me that i have lost that connection

there is so much that is lost

and i know that i am not the only one

there are others like me

who have that fear when the time comes to speak

anishnaabemowin

 

even if the heat rises and breaks through to the skin with droplets

even if my tongue is heavy as lead

even if i am scared of making a mistake

i must try

for myself and all those children who came before me

and who will walk after me

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