a note on the body

your body still your body
your arms still wing
your mouth still a gun

you tragic, misfiring bird

you have all you need to be a hero
don’t save the world, save yourself

you worship too much & you worship too much

when prayer don’t work:      dance, fly, fire

this is your hardest scene
when you think the whole sad thing might end

but you live      oh, you live

everyday you wake you raise the dead

everything you do is a miracle

Danez Smith, “a note on the body” from Don’t Call Us Dead. Copyright © 2020 by Danez
Smith. Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of Graywolf Press,
Minneapolis, Minnesota, graywolfpress.org.

This poem was originally read in the This Movie Change Me episode Danez Smith — The Color Purple.