Born and raised in Washington, D.C., where I learned to fish and wander. Raised by southern grandparents, Nelba & Ernest and a D.C. native mom named Patricia Ann, aunts Cassie & Lalu and mom's boyfriend Bill. Humid summers spent between D.C., Baltimore and New York.
Rhythmic echoes, raw morass between nail, skin. Stretching. Kin. TIght. My grandma waiting to catch the placenta. I was raised by four women and a grandfather who would sing and Bill who taught me how to handle the hooks between my fingers.
Wet like scales scraped off on the cutting board on the counter beneath the kitchen window. Mom taught me how to divide the fish down the middle. We could take out the bones for broth and save the heads to feed the crabs.
My grandpa told stories every year. They called this man a boy before he came home to pluck the birth from grandma's nails. Grandma strong. Delivered babies. Made dinner for every night. Vegetable. Green. Vegetable. Yellow. Protein. Starch. Family stick together. We make split pea soup.