Dear Fear by Amoya Reé

Poet name: Amoya Reé Poem Name: Dear Fear Poem: Dear Fear, where the hell did you come from? See at first I thought it was just my mind playing tricks on me you know like those things they tell you when you’re 3 “it’s just your imagination” “stop complaining” “be a big girl” Be like... my mother? with her skin like freshly brewed iced tea, and just as cold with her magnetic hips that support her steel-framed back that always seems to bend but never breaks and I seem to have inherited her every trait, so I wonder... I wonder if she too feels that tingle at her nape do the hairs on the back of her neck stand up straight when her boyfriend raises his hand above his head? Or is it just at the thought of her babies no longer being fed, if she leaves? And I want to tell her to move out of her way, to give her Warrior pass, but then I look into those deep-set brown eyes and I realize its fear they say memory is literally embedded in our DNA so why can’t I remember whose body you first took over? Whose life did you first destroy? With your tapeworm, parasitic only thriving because I let you residue of pain entity that can’t seem to let me breathe arriving at the most inopportune times, like periods when I’m wearing all white You disgust me And I know you are a natural because you were not there to stop Eve I search my bloodstream with every lash I receive as a result of you and the question Still Remains, who sent for you? I wonder, how did Sarah Baartman control you? How did Henrietta Lacks manage to live as long as you? Did Korryn Gaines not know of your power? And how do I? Daughter of gods and Kings? I Reincarnation of ancestors who sang for, danced for and healed man who worshipped at their feet I keep her of humanity in my womb I sister of shadows who freed slaves in the night I mother of Maroons I kinfolk to the high priestesses I friend to the moon I ocean and earth blood I black sky with stars for eyes I steel wool and silk I land of honey and milk I am the land of honey and milk I prize of War I casualty of War I am Warrior I am Warrior and you fear will not destroy me or control me you will sit under my tongue like stale gum you will hide in the corner of my mouth until I find somewhere worthy to spit you out You will sit under my chin collecting Buckets of Blood as I devour the globe you will come only when called speak only when spoken to remember your place, fear For when my magical gleam begins to dull and my fire begins to fade you are only a PART of the fuel End of Poem. Credits: Copyright © Amoya Reé Amoya Reé (she/her) is a Jamaican-Canadian performance poet and 2018 Canadian National Champion. Her writing is rooted in her lived experiences as an immigrant, mother, & community worker. Exploring the cultural significance of things like race, mothering and love, she often blends historical fact with present realities, making for a poetic experience that is both informational and inspirational. She began exploring performance poetry in 2008 & since then she has shared her stories in classrooms & boardrooms across Ontario. Affectionately known as Reé, she sat as captain of the 2018 Toronto Poetry Slam team who were semi-finalists at the National Poetry Slam in Chicago and went on to win the Canadian National Championship in Guelph, Ontario. She has had featured performances at the coveted When Sisters Speak (2019) and at Toronto Poetry Slam (2019). As the Artistic Director of KTV Media, a virtual production enterprise that promotes Black art and excellence, she lends her talents to producing, directing, and hosting virtual arts events and initiatives. Reé was recently crowned the 2021 Toronto Grand Slam Champion and is currently working on her debut collection through support from the Canada Council for the Arts.