The Earth Responds As It Does

Magan Magan

 

When I was a young girl

my teacher used to tell me I was an Island.

He was a stuffy concrete home.

His flower bulb hands would swim across

the ocean of my stomach.

And when he swam

I swear he could see the coral

Inside me – all blue and green

and even golden brown

like the colour of my skin.

Until his words got too hot

and bleached my body

and so I screamed

and he looked at me,

with all the wonder in the world.

As though I was now a sinking Island

but he was an airless tin shed

who housed rotting wood with holes.

I want to decamp from

the changing climate of his hands

to catch the cool wind of the past

all those years ago

when the sea stretched out

as far as my limbs.

But now the sea leaps

at my home only metres away.

 

 

Magan Magan is the author of From Grains to Gold (Vulgar Press, 2018). He was a 2018 Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellow and co-editor of two anthologies, Growing Up African In Australia (Black Inc, 2019) and Volume 7 of Australian Poetry Anthology.

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