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Mar 2016
ask me about my safe place
and i'll tell you about mirrors
three and a half walls is what i remember
a little cracked because you leave the fear
with your shoes at the door, bow before you step in
eyes closed, breathing in
rivaling your reflection and rest assured,
you will be stronger than before
i want to write about uniforms pristine and fists clenched and how proud i was of every little step closer to the front line but the strength is in the moments i can count over my knuckles over and over again :
i. red moon scars bisecting the destiny lines i don't care about but look black belt! look how tight my fists are
ii. walking down the street us three brown brown black mothers suddenly in front of their little ones and HYAA! from every third passerby; downtown is so beautiful
iii. sensei's office: trying not to cry because it takes all i have to crawl to the dojo every monday and by the time i'm standing there hands flat by my side the three strips on my brown just aren't good enough, 'thank you for coming today'
iv. third time i have passed out in the past half hour but you're making me get up get up get up spinning hook kick i nearly pass out again because i DID IT
v. ichi nee san **** it's all japanese translating into 'i bully you because you are strong enough today' snap kick, in your face
vi. coming home comparing the bruises my mother is smiling shaking her head and her own is begging us to please just quit
vii. the living room is our own little battleground I'M TRYING TO WATCH THE NEWS GO BREAK YOUR BACKS IN YOUR OWN ROOMS
viii. i have muscles no you can't make me shut up
ix. the morning after: every limb creaking like abandoned warehouse floors but i'm relishing the burning with every turn of my head, stretch of my legs because it aches sweet like valour sweet like brave
x. just the stairs we used to choose the elevator over because yellow belts what do you want from us, just the dread of mondays and thursdays dissolving into bliss in meditation, just my legs dragging me back to war when the rest of me would very much rather be back in bed but it's been an entire week without punching bags and i miss the victory when you hit and the nobility when you miss miss miss and just the burning pride watching my baby brother punch so hard my little sister and her leg flying well above her ahead and just
knowing that i will never ever be afraid
ode to karate
Written by
Sarah  Karakura Town, Japan
(Karakura Town, Japan)   
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