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  • Brilliance Jones

the break. an ode to Toni Morrison

Last night, I felt my breaking.

I didn’t know the cause,

but the effect. The effect was spiritual and physical.

I felt myself break. Not mentally or emotionally.


I felt my world shift.

I couldn’t pinpoint it.

Too much wine, not enough vitamins. Too many hormones, not enough wine.

There was a reason, I was sure of it. But I couldn’t identify


Last night my place in the world changed.

There are greats who are charged with words.

They are who we listen to.

They are who we believe.

We know that they are human yet their words inspire the earth to grow fields and rain to fall down in torrential madness.

They are not gods, yet

they communicate with the universe we believe we cannot see.

James Baldwin spoke to me yesterday.

He spoke again this morning.

“Write. You have to write.

give more. speak more. be, more.”

Last night I drowned in my bed. I screamed in my sleep, had conversations without remembrance or response.

Last night my kum-by ya left this realm and my insides fought themselves to find a new way to request God’s presence.

Toni Morrison.

I found life in her words.

Last night, her words became past and my spiritual song lost its melody.

Come by here, my Lord. Come by here. Oh! Lord, come by here.

Last night I churned pain. This morning, I woke up and understood why.

I am now forced to speak louder. I am now forced to write. I am in conviction of the call I am required to answer.

Last night, the bluest eye became a mary jane and today I must write.

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