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2004-01-05

Madge Sinclair
B. 4.28.38 Kingston, Jamaica / D. 12.20.95 Los Angeles
Leukemia

I move from room to room in the manner of the great kabaka of 19th-century Buganda—dread Mutesa, emulator of lions, who always walked stiff-legged on his toes. I steady myself in the doorways. Like an ingenue’s heartbeat threatening to burst her purple negligee, blood rains hammer blows on the windows I’ve ripped in the skin of my heels. While reading or watching TV, I pick away the new callus; I peel it off in a litter of strips. There's a TV ad running lately for 1-800 product called “Miracle Skin Repair.” Every time it airs, I picture thousands of my kind being roused from our lingering hand-feasts of flesh to stalk the nearest or most helpless telephones
Nants ingonyama bagithi baba
There comes a lion
Sithi uhhmm ingonyama
Oh yes, it’s a lion
Ingonyama.

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