And loss slaps me still. Makes me tongue tied and dizzy.

Loss has altered my DNA. Our DNA.

My body moves differently without my grandmama here. Our bodies move and function differently without our people “here”.

My lungs pull in less air without my nana here. Without my papa here…

We are encouraged to mark folks’ relationship to us, to always identify in relationship to the other. Upon introductions, we say this is “my” partner, “my” child, “my” sibling. We are taught to lay claim to folks, to see them as possessions and extensions of ourselves, to ultimately uplift our…

There is a smooth point where your brain and heart break at the same time. Let’s call this place a fault line. A blood transfusion. An almost smile. A ravine.

Shock. Storm. Stroke. Dementia. Portable oxygen tank. Fly in mouth. Lupus. Diabetes. Ketchup on eggs.

Each time it happens, you…

In the cyber, social and physical world of Radical Black Politics, some of us claim (to be) spaces of transformation, embodiment, right relationship and deep connection. We talk about the worlds we build and the “work” we do. We talk. A lot.

We’re amazing actors. We pretend to listen. We…

People get to un-choose me.

This does not mean that I am evil or toxic or trash.

And, it may mean that I am those things for some.

For those who I am this for, please know:

You get to stay away.
You get to say no.
You get to say not…

CW: Mentions of Childhood Sexual Assault, Pedophilia and Loss

I was 15 the first time I kissed a girl full on with tongue. It was like we exploded into each other. All starry orange burst, hope, lust, nacho cheese sunflower seed breath and fear. Our tongues moved like our hands…

Amber Butts

Amber Butts is a storyteller, cultural strategist, and grief worker. She firmly believes in the bonds of living beings everywhere.

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