Shaunga Tagore performs The Erasable Woman, A One Woman Show. May 2015, Mayworks Festival. Photo Credit: Hamidah Hemani

Spring’s Promise by Shaunga Tagore

Part of Special Issue #2 – Bodies as Archives: QTBIPOC Art and Performance in Toronto

Author: Shaunga Tagore

Shaunga Tagore performs The Erasable Woman, A One Woman Show. May 2015, Mayworks Festival. Photo Credit: Hamidah Hemani
Shaunga performs The Erasable Woman, A One Woman Show. May 2015, Mayworks Festival. Photo Credit: Hamidah Hemani

too many times have I left
community
for a break-up

break-down break-out break-open
when commitment trust promise
left me

packed up moved out
houses friendships activist dreams
chasing
you running from me

too many departures
family
intimacy
heart beat

left and leavings across oceans
rushing restless blood streams
sister mother father grandparents ancestors

too many times have we all left home

this time
I refuse to be the one to leave

I stay with Spirit / Fire
nothing is ever created or destroyed
only transformed

Stay with Heart / Water
when I am here
I am all ever found and lost
everything invisible
we know but don’t say out loud

flaring tempers imploding at blank walls
insomnia talking loved ones and self out of suicide
tears streaming behind sunglasses on the subway
exhaustion and grief that won’t get out of bed  

kept alive by surprise home-cooked food drop-offs from chosen family
loving words from unlikely acquaintances reaching out on social media
belly-ache laughter with friends about community gossip
femme of colour healer madness brilliance wisdom magic
that never died with any burning  

Stay with Bones / Earth
tell the difference between leaving and boundaries
choose endings and beginnings instead of abandonment

make no rejection a reason
to reject myself

no matter how hard the day
watch the sun set and rise    

Stay with Words / Air
abstractions we breathe in and out
no meaning except the meaning we give
where language is never forgotten
only created  

time travel with ancestors, ancient and apocalyptic
portals and alternate dimensions give gifts
of another perspective
a different choice
a memory

of community as adventure
taking a risk on the desire to be known and loved
falling apart that can’t be fixed
and daring to hope once again

a promise
we made to ourselves
and the stars
the day we were born

when we were seeds
not broken pieces
flowers bloomed from
magic
never departed

(April 2015)