I still feel the weight of the shackles. They hold me back. Confine me. Contort me. The ropes too. They burn me. My flesh has never been the same. I can still smell the Ocean water. I can taste it too. Below deck, I can feel the fear from my brothers. I can feel the fear creep through my skeleton. I still feel the rope around my neck. I miss my sands, my waters, my air. You called this slavery. You called this servitude. I can still feel my throat tighten when I see your ancestors. When I see your ancestors. I still see you. I don’t fuck with boats. I don’t fuck with tree climbing. The trauma passed down, through and through in the genes. Don’t tell me to forget. Don’t tell me to chill. The diaspora ruined me. And I made the lands my own. Brought my gods and my customs, disguised them in your names. I still remember the prayers I sang chained to beams. Don’t tell me to forget.