MOURNING CHORUS (2021) I'm thinking about the function of a chorus within a song and how it is something that is often expected and repeated. I'm thinking about the white supremacist tool to condition people to become accustomed to Black death to the point in which it is no longer seen as tragic or remarkable, but instead normal and expected. I'm thinking about what this does to a Black person's psyche and how it may stunt our process of mourning. I found myself sunken into a hole, swept up in the wealth of pain from collectively grieving the many Black lives lost daily from state-sanctioned violence, personally grieving the loss of my father, and not knowing what to do with the grief I have for what I feel I've lost in myself after being physically assaulted and sexually abused on separate occasions shortly after seeing my father go. Although I fully understood that loss is extraordinary, I was telling myself I wasn't allowed to feel it and should move on, intentionally confusing nursing wounds with numbing them. In this piece, I try to contend with the feeling of rage and disappointment for taking up residence in this hole where the significance of loss is muddied and dismissed, and so the journey to healing is too. In this hole there is no poetry, just a relentless chorus.

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