They say you resemble me.
Years ago in Jamaica
when you were still an infant
a great aunt upon seeing you
for the first time
But is little Opal same face on this one.
Dem cut from de same cloth!
Are we cut from the same cloth?
How are we alike?
How do we differ?
Today, 24 years after you were born
I reflect on carrying your for nine months,
trying to bring up what stands out during that pregnancy.
I remember your birth clearly, especially when your brother and sister and grandpa and grandmother
came and saw you in the hospital the next day. I remember how you clung to me, and I wondered if
you would ever detach yourself.
I remember being frantic, doing the edits on my dissertation while I breast-fed you.
I remember thinking how incredible enormous is the human capacity to love and to protect because I love you with every ounce of blood in my body, and I didn’t think this would have been possible with two other children.
I remember long after you had your own room, every night I would wake and find that you had again crawled into my bed, your arms and legs flung over me.
I knew you would be the last child I would bear, and I was willing to give you the world, and still am prepared to do so.
daring, ferocious, womanist
you’ve always loved the world
and wanted the best for it
in that regard we are similar.
Not afraid to try and fail and try and accomplish
Not afraid to demand your full share and more
Not afraid to go where others have not gone
You take risks
Your allow yourself to be stretched
Your love is a square knot
You will neither betray nor abandon friends
You are my daughter
and your birth is also my birth
another realization of self
another opportunity to teach and learn
to dance at life’s many miracles
and say thank you
for bringing you into my life
thank you for showing me
what is possible in those we love
But mostly thanks you for the enduring love and connection; thank you for what is yet to come.