I am gracefully unhinged, misunderstood without being sorry, and comfortable in this skin, stitched together with imperfections like a map that never fails to show me the way. And I walk with my heart, barely beating or splitting open, the middle never did know my name. I stand with my feet on the black and white, stepping over the cracks, where the gray threatens to break beneath me. And sometimes I jump on the cracks like a dare, wait there to ride the free fall, and hit bottom hard enough to choke; my heart always was in my throat. And with every breath, there’s a song on my tongue, pulling words and tasting lyrics that bust out alone without the music. I stay in the shadows of the solo, wait in the dark beneath the a cappella and dodge the exposure of the spotlight that may fall across my face like a sky of music I’m not ready for. But still I dance with the words, breathe in the shadows, move to the tune of my own heart, barely beating or splitting open like it does. And somewhere, just along the middle, there’s a song that plays from my name, striking every cord of fear in me. It plays in a loop that bounces between the color and the gray, like white noise trying to be heard, until I am not afraid of anything. And the spotlight drops, shines into the universe that exists in my eyes, and the stage looks like the only place my heart ever did call home. I am gracefully unhinged, between the music and lyrics, and I sway back and forth along the edges of where the color meets the gray, nothing is in my way, and fear is only a story I heard once that wasn’t even true.
Stephanie Bennett-Henry #stephaniebennetthenry