Meaning pregnant.
Full. Abundant.
Gravida implying gravity.
The weight of being with child.
My mind always hears ‘grave’
In Spanish
Serious. Important. Momentous.

Pendulous bellies swollen
With lives that we cannot predict;
Heavy with a new life
An entire universe of a person
Weighing on these hips.

Though I am nulligravida –
Never pregnant, never this copious –
I have held laboring women
Their weight on me as I make myself
To support
To hold
To guide them
As they prepare to release
This load
This body
This life
This Royalty
This burden
Of mothering while Black.

It is a grave situation that
Breaks backs and
Breaks hearts
Knowing we must give our lives
Holding our breaths
That these children might be

It is too real
Painful to feel your heart
Hold so much water
Leap into your throat
Nearly suffocating you
With the probable tears
That may be shed at birth
At a funeral.

This act of resistance
To still create in the ghastly face of
Death, destruction, execution –
Genocide –
In fear of this precious cargo
This gift of hope and promise
Being taken too soon from momma’s arms
Too soon from dreams coming true
Too soon
Too intentional
Too much history
Replicating itself
By a system
By overseers turned officers.

La situación esta grave.
The situation is serious.
If we didn’t love these children so much
We might commit infanticide just so
They can leave this planet on our terms.
We pray to our ancestral mothers for strength
To endure our children’s probable fates
To resist this darkness.

Gravida. This gravity.
Who will hold this weight but us?
The mothers
The ones sacrificing our bodies
Our wombs
Our hearts at risk of being annihilated –
Our arms nearly broken
For the way a child will fall heavy
Con esto
Tan grave.

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