Babe let’s go on vacation to Toronto!
Secretly I’m having one of those moments where I just want to leave.
Flee.
Be anywhere anywhere else but here.

Secretly I am hoping to scope out Canada.
See if I could build a life at the end of the Underground Railroad.
See if perhaps it is the magical place I am running to in dreams that leave my teeth pounding in pain.
Maybe I could raise a son there, maybe he would be safe!
Maybe I could call for help in times of trouble without fearing for my life!
Maybe they would love me.
Imagine that.

Then I remember.
I do not belong there.
I belong here, and only here.
Which, really, means I belong nowhere at all.
Am truly seen nowhere at all
Am safe nowhere at all

Usually I shield myself from such thoughts.
With outrage, activism, avoidance, apathy
Sometimes, too well
So that when the face of a missing black girl ignored by the media scrolls across my timeline
I don’t even click share.
So that when another child is hunted down
I don’t even follow the latest.

But today I am having one of those moments when the pain slips through all my mental dams.
Rises thick and swift and hard through the air of my mind.
Today it hurts.

Renisha