Midnight Air in Louisville

Afaa Michael Weaver

for Breonna Taylor

Dear Breonna,
How many times, I ask,
how many times
have I chased the thought
of writing to you,
of catching the poem where
it cannot leave,
of knocking open the door to a grief
we all hold, our hearts
full of questions.
We leave our houses to work,
to look for what we need to live,
or what we need
to make the pain go away,
and your voice rises:
“Oh hell to the no,
no he didn’t,
Satan get behind me,
whatever, whatever
the hell you think you are.”

I imagine that in leaving
all of us you said:
“I am done
I am let out into the world,
breath I took in from it
breath that I give back in love.”

May I see you in flight
filling the space
beyond clouds and stars
where there is no need
of sun or moon, where
a grand city lives
in prophecies beaten
by the wheels of history
where you are not invisible
to ancestors who saw
these long roads down through time
to this one night in Louisville.

Bright Angel,
Luminescence, Woman Who Saved Lives
in Emergency Rooms,
Invocation of Heaven’s Law,
Living Song Riding
the Eternal Dawn.

These titles I summon from license
given by Eternal Mysteries to hold you.
Fly now, in the woven air of the saints.

Last updated November 11, 2022