cutting greens by Maria Velazquez

Lucille Clifton, 1936 - 2010

curling them around
i hold their bodies in obscene embrace
thinking of everything but kinship.
collards and kale
strain against each strange other
away from my kissmaking hand and
the iron bedpot.
the pot is black.
the cutting board is black,
my hand,
and just for a minute
the greens roll black under the knife,
and the kitchen twists dark on its spine
and i taste in my natural appetite
the bond of live things everywhere.

From Wives, Slaves, and Servant Girls -- Don Hagist by Maria Velazquez

Run away from the subscriber some time in November last, a Mulatto woman of a middle size, though slim; she has the appearance of a moth upon her cheeks; her hands very remarkable as she cannot straiten her fingers
— Wives, Slaves, and Servant Girls, Don Hagist

Originally shared this to my Facebook page; Gena Lopez christened Free Fanny a "Afrodiaspora cripplepunk heroine," in part because the "appearance of a moth upon her cheeks" suggests that she might have had lupus. Psyche Williams-Forson zeroed in on the description of Fanny's clothing, suggesting that Fanny's dress might mean she was a mulatto, and that her having run away from the home but not the farm could mean she was a house worker.