Art by Neville Dsouza

This why your man want me.
Cuz my value ain’t built
on what can be bought.
It’s built on my worth.
It can’t be traded
And It can’t be taught

You don’t like yourself
That confidence
You get from the liquor
I get when I look in the mirror
I don’t need poison
to lift my spirit
I don’t need to be deluded [diluted]
To see myself clearer

I design myself in these letters
and define myself with these words
I shape myself in complete thoughts
And when I speak what I write
You listen
Trying to see
What you heard

You don’t believe I am all that I am
How could my strength be true
When you have to buy everything
That makes you, you

Although I’ve been forged in fires
I don’t burn
I don’t waste to ashes
I don’t turn to dust
I sinter
From clay to ceramic
Until my worth is earned.

Master Pieces


They all say they would.
They say they all would.
When I tell them my story.
Should I? Keep it together?
Be… like them?

I don’t really know how to be…normal.
It’s just not written into me.
It would do no service for me.
It would do NO service for me.

Sure, I am broken, but not apart.
I am crafting and refining myself
Redesigning and redefining myself
I am rebuilding.
Rearranging my pieces.

I broke myself because
I didn’t like what I was seeing
I was a slave to the old whole
Now I am making my mosaic
Mastering my pieces
So bright, so inescapable, so original
Gilding all of me in gold
Discarding nothing
Just organizing and positioning

I am broken because
I want to design something new
Unlike any other work I’ve seen

I had to break
I had to shatter
All that I was told to be
To create MY masterpiece.