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By Jan Lunette

Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

The colour of her skin makes golden hour last

for days, years, a lifetime in which the sun never sets.

In Maori, she is the good morning when coffee neither burns your tongue nor cools your soul. The salt bread melts and breaks apart like the handful of light umber gems I steal from the ocean floor. Tidal kisses soften my heart and beneath her body, I settle; on her lips, I keep afloat.

A Sotho sovereign, high on a pedestal made of clouds; she is clothed in cirrus’ wispy strokes, couched on temperate stratus, and crowned with cumulus’ curls. Leza, the sky god she loved, withdraws from the tangerine sky to worship her.

A Filipino beauty misunderstood, she is a Pacific siren singing forgotten hymns and secret folksongs, a relic of land no longer home. Apolaki’s weeping hand weaves a tapestry on her sun-dust coloured skin, and beneath congealed blood, I find lost tribes and stolen islands;

her body — a landscape of a past

often shelved, but always rewritten.

Her Life — fathered by dying wishes,

beats to the rhythm of jackfruit drums

and repeated verse of ancestral breath:

Remember us.

Remember us.

Remember us.