Eventually, the time came. She craved the ancestral home that belonged to her alone.
The heat of the raw African sand beneath her bare feet.
Sweet nothings; music to her ears as the dessert wind gently sweeps past her cheeks.
Her pulse quickening to the tender weight of a single raindrop on the tip of her tongue – a dance to celebrate a holy reunion.
She knew then that it was time to surrender and retreat to the abandoned pure place within her. The home she had traded for fools gold: glittering lights, drunken nights, superficial conversations. Oh, she did so much to fit into this world that buried her heart alive. Suffocated beneath layers of voices telling her how to be and who to be – thud, thud, thud – it always threatened to leap out and expose her true form.
Mind over matter, the conditioning ran straight to her marrow.
‘What will the people think if I show them my true colours?’
‘Will my voice offend them so much that I become the center of their daily conversations?’
‘Will they like me?’
She kept her mouth shut, and attempted to tame her wild spirit. A little off beat, she marched to the beat of a system that condoned herd mentality. She laughed at jokes made about her hair. She sat and dined with the very wolves who stole her pride and with their hungry looks, threatened to take whatever little was left of her dignity. A promotion eventually came. By then, lifting a leg to climb a ladder of success defined by another was a chore.
Commands to come back home became too loud to ignore.
She fell to her knees, tears running down her cheeks, she kissed her hands hello.
Weary and withered, she was home. Those who came before her dwelled in the pure walls of her heart. This time, they ululated and embraced her, knowing she had returned to herself for good.