Eva Wanita by LIly Woodworth Wisdom
from Metro

Ode to Eva Wanita

Poem by Lily Woodworth Wisdom from Metro

My mother was a quiet woman, with dreams that signified the end. She always maintained that she wouldn’t change it, that I made her painful life worthwhile. She said “I don’t want you to think that I don’t love you, or the life that I was blessed to have, but that doesn’t mean I want you crying on the floor the night before your wedding. I don’t want you to bleed every month, and be scared that it means you’re dying. I don’t want you to bleed every month, and be scared because you know it’s time.”


sometimes i think drowning is the sickest way to die

because you know there’s nothing left for you

but your body just keeps on breathing

& i wonder how a mother can look her daughter in the eyes

and think there she is, my baby girl

my very own flesh and blood

without bursting out crying

& i wonder how a son can face his mother

after hitting a girl

and finding out that she screams the same way his mama does

& i do not know how a man can think about hurting you

before deciding not to and becoming a hero


on a cold day i rinse and spit and the water runs red

& i get dressed but do not put on any makeup

& a stranger renames me after all the things he thinks i’m afraid to be