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You don’t have to speak my language for me to love you. You don’t have to worship as I do for me to love you. You don’t have to be my shade, racial mixture, ethnicity, nationality for me to love you. You don’t have to love as I love for me to love you. You don’t have to be like me or like mine for me to love you.

I just have to love you.

A Start…

I see you trying while we’re dying

Weaving back and forth between the phrases

Your mouth may have never felt compelled to form until now

Wanting to say the right thing

(It is a start)

But when it comes out

Your flesh struggles to separate the years of “no need” from the apologies of the new day

Words fumble and jumble, and the need to protect your fear slides in to lessen the impact of your attempts

As well as the wind it took to push it forward

Your message received, but the relief flees when

Your words are regurgitated in the mouths of those who have believed

That it was awkward, unenlightened, insincere…

Those who have anxiously waited to believe that your years of disdain and flawed perceptions had totally shifted

While they were dying for change even as they buried their dead

Between tears and fatigue, they dwell on what you said

Analyzed and sighed that you still “don’t get it”

I see you, though

(It’s a start)

Keep going, and

Listen to the small voice that you’ve avoided

The one that buckles you in guilt and shame

Lean into its presence

It will give you what to say

It will tell you what to do

It will keep you from walking away

(It is a start)

This conciliation is for us all

It has to happen lest we all tumble and fall

If that be the case, we shall do nothing

Except hit the wall

So keep going

Keep trying

Yea, as we fight to stop

All of our dying