I joke that cancer, especially chemotherapy, was so bad I wrote poetry.
This poem is one of what ended up being a series of five.
This was written post-surgery, before starting chemotherapy.
I reject the reduction of my self
To a set of breasts and a vulva.
I am not my body parts,
I am not my hair.
I don’t owe you my smile.
My body is a whole country
And it is mine.
My sovereignty, my flesh vehicle
My home, the castle in which I live.
My body is my temple,
My sacred cave where I worship
My Deities, where I honour my Ancestors,
Where I commune with Spirits.
Do not address my body parts
As distinct from my identity.
Do not attempt to reduce me
To my sex organs, my smile, my hair.
I cut my hair in celebration
I removed cancerous tissue defiantly
I choose life.
Do not dishonour or disrespect
My power by your obsession
About my hair, my breasts.
My body is my sacred vessel
And together we are whole.
©️ Fabienne S. Morgana 12th August 2021