i remember stars. this girl who birthed me heaving
and gasping, words i was never given the chance to
understand, and even now i do not know the language
of gritting teeth and painful pulse surely as i do not know
how to ask for food in my native tongue, the necessities
of being a woman and the shape of the moon on the other
side of the world. with lidded eyes i watched the stars
from inside her. but i had to grow up and learn new
constellations, learn that some people would try to tag
my skin with words i could hear, but meaning i couldn’t
fathom. now it is time for new languages, migrations
of bodies, carrying the firmament inside me wherever i go.
now the stars are familiar and i name them how i want.