The Foreign Exchange Project

So this poem is written for a special friend who has encouraged me to begin blogging again. What will be hilarious is if she never even reads this…

Foreign Exchange Project
She was a hacky sack type of hyper when I spotted her
Oozing with salutation and smiles as she puffed her cigarette and exhaled
Giggling like a child with a gleeful glimmer in her toasted almond eyes
I was excited to meet her and
She couldn’t have been more happy to see me (and everyone else)
Like a bumble bee was buzzing in her panties
She was painting my evening a brighter shade of blue
And I was thankful for the unfamiliar warmth her smile held
I was ungluing all my misconceptions of her from the moment she spoke to me
“Hi, I’m Digh” is all she said.
Nothing exotic or foreign to it.
An exchange so matter of fact and bold that I will always remember that moment for what it was… unexpected and real.
So many things had been expressed to her about me, and to me about her from mutual friends; but we had never met. Until that moment I was just the black Christian poet from San Antonio and she was just the foreign Indian poet. The stranger poet living in, Corpus Christi, a city I knew all too well and loathed it for too many reasons to count.
But it was home just like her friendship. Welcoming like a coastal city breeze can be with a bit of salt and humidity to boot. Little did I know that her poetry was the truth and root of wisdom I needed to grow. Her talent the humbling kind spell binding me to silence when she’d recite prose or sing me a tune for a distant lover.
Little did she know then that she’d become my sister from another mister. As she spent her summer cooking me curry and opening my eyes to a culture I never once bothered to contemplate let alone comprehend.
From the moment we met she was and will always be my friend.
No pretending, but we do challenge each other to pursue our respective paths.
Place our passion and caution on a scale and weigh the possible outcomes. So we find ourselves gathering our gifts together to present them to the time as an offering… as a rites of passage to the future. We lay our journeys on the altar of hope not knowing what blessings or misfortunes may befall us.
And we share with each other because compensating for all our short comings alone is just exhausting. And beauty is much more breath taking when we gasp and grasp for it together. She is the bosom buddy that I will take to the grave, but her love is already buried in my heart…
In exchange I have given her mine whether she knows it or not.
I guess my love for a foreigner is all I’ve got. What a great way to pass the time.

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