A Few Nights Under the Moonlight in Bahia
BY DORIANA DIAZ.
the first night/on the terrace at dusk overlooking the Salvador streets/we spoke of the women in white and
voodoo/we spoke of home/and the places we mistakenly tried to build one in/we spoke of Cape Town
where she grew up/tired and tender/we held hands tightly/made a promise that we would return to this
land/and grow old here together/eventually evaporate into the sky/die holy in a place where/they would
find us/one morning/tucked gently in our beds/still smiling.
under the moonlight a few days after/we all found our feet prancing right on the cusp of/where the ocean
meets the sand/pulling our ankles out into the current/the water kissed every crevice of our skin/we
floated out into the emptiness/skin shining like the dust from the sun/in the deepest part/we bounced with
the weight of the waves/we watched the flesh on the shoreline/dance/giggle/drink/make love to the night.
one evening/in the middle of it all/there was a twitch/a sting and then a burning that crept its way
through/every blood vessel/toes curling/at how my body needed to devour itself/scrape away the bits
and pieces of decay I brought along with me/the land opened its womb/as I drifted closer to sleep/the
nights rolled over themselves/into flashes/of uncut memories/leaking/specs of gold/onto my eyelids.
on our last night/all us black women let our thighs get angry/at the sound of bangodrums/our mouths
dripping of slurs and love songs/our hips grinding as we cried sweet relief/we knew we had no more
blood to lose/under the blowing banyan trees we laughed so hard our teeth/fell out at the roots/our bones
fused together/we became a carnival/of shimmering skin/black in beauty/under the moonlight/the stars
could have seen us smile.
Doriana is a Philadelphia based storyteller. She released her first self published book of prose entitled Mami Calls Me Gabriella in October of 2018. Her writing encompasses her personal experiences being an Afro-Latina and the complexities of her womanhood. She writes to enhance her understanding of self in every phase, chapter and dimension. You can follow her on Instagram @bydorianadiaz.