That garbage bag in the post office, worn by a woman on Fifth Avenue in New York City. The industrial strength kind that people who deal in garbage prefer and she wore it- it was her clothes. The way it slipped off her shoulder she had nothing on underneath. Her clavicle such a bone. Some bone so fragile and strong. Something you don’t see unless the meat has been stripped, unless you’re so starved, the mask falls away, and there, the biology of us all. Her dark brown skin over the bone in her arms, her wrists hinging back and forth, discomfort entered our eyes. I could not leave her every move, slow, deliberate. Air chilled with early winter, we pedestrians turned our collars up, tightened scarves around our necks, our hands stuffed into our pockets- we would not give even if asked. She laid down in a puddle of sun. I was sad for both of us. I don’t know what to do with a black woman in a black bag and so I cried.
from loving you is complicated by arisa white
indeed, too many of these moments day to day making my way around town, something confirming in writing like hers but not curative, such is our lives I suppose, what a species we be…