Sweetest day of my life is stolen by the sun who saw me and chose to rise two hours late. Everybody stops to look not at me. I am dull gold as if I did not already                  my own skin. Do you know how long it takes to grow courage to steal from the one you might love? 4 generations. My mother might leave me where she found me and the shame might be archived as a hymn. At least now I am the only one who is not blinded; I am too sad to look. The truth of it is, they are all pretending. The joke of it is, the lights down here are actually dull, the soil hates us and is crumbling backwards away from its birthday, the lovers are bad for us, contaminated and wrong. I only wanted to make myself beautiful in a temporary way. The sun doesn’t give a damn. Told me once already how careful I must be to stamp love raw on a human heart, it is a delicate task.


At this point, you have asked me to rest
Twice now.

I stay up because
Lately I have become so unafraid.

You send an orange midnight
And scare everyone.
I trick you out of anger with gossip.

You are a hypocrite sometimes.


I ache for a weaker sunset because I have too many memories. Your sunsets are always attacks and yellow curses, saturated, migraine; portraiture that I seal my eyes to. In protest. I long for more time to hear old voices echo in their frightening ways.

The ones we don’t recognise claw close in the throat and call us by our full names the way our mothers did. I am usually very grateful, maybe I lack whatever it is that I came with. I have so many questions but I am too damp to interest flames. I wish you the best anyway. You promise the earth an entire rebirth and you keep the naming ceremony small, the prophesy is secret, the new colour of day is dampened for reasons only adults understand. I can barely remember what it looked like before you.


By the way, does love still live in the kidneys?



…………………………………………..[The sun parades, shouts this time and – once
…………………………………………..again – we forget the proverb was written for a
…………………………………………..love such as ours]


Amara Amaryah is a poet and storyteller of Jamaican descent. Her poems explore the intersections between voicelessness, generational traditions, prayer and black womanhood. Amara is a Hippodrome Young Poet and has performed at the RSC’s Bright Smoke, Birmingham Literature Festival, Heaux Noire and RAP party. Her poetry can be found translated in the Colombian publication Arcadia. Most recently, she has been invited to share her poetry at the Cosmopoética literary festival (Córdoba, Spain).

Image banner: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center via Flickr Creative Commons