axis overturned
by megan wray
i am safe.

the bombs never hit my first cousin
twice removed
twice terrified
twice stripped of colour in
her now ghostly face
i am safe
from the locked doors on gates of camps
dimly lit walls of dampened shacks
shackled to the feet of the other
to whom i am reflected against
but one is in yards
while one is in barns
but i am awake
and the nightmare stops
where i am safe
from tokens
and types
and racial jokes of falling pans
and facial skin pulled by hands
i am free
from fear of falling shards
and shrapnel
and boxes shoved to me by sergeants
telling me to fit what i can
while i still have a chance
and i can’t feel the fabric against my skin
because it’s no longer metaphorical
and my identity is no longer numerical
i am not a digit
of how many of us were there
how many of us are still here
and the boxes are just flower beds
sitting in my grandmothers driveway
and the flowers keep growing
and i keep growing
and i have no wounds

no diasporic fears
and i am safe
and i am here
and none of us disappeared.