I am here mamma. I am here. When your ship docks in the Harbour after that abomination they called the ’middle passage‘ and you are released from the leg irons to stumble ashore terrified, decimated, emaciated, I am here to welcome you no matter the centuries that separate us. I am here. To take you to my home, no matter its simplicity, its near collapse, it’s full of love. For you. I am here, no matter your many daughters between us that don’t won’t can’t claim you, I claim you. I bring you to my own worn mattress, put cool clean fresh sheets for you to lay on. Wash your broken feet, your matted hair, put the finest softest clothes I can find on your tired body. Prop you up with the best of the flattened pillows, bring you cool water and help you sip sip til your dry lips get plump and moist again. I am here. To bring you little meals of the best I have in the house even if that’s only Vienna sausages. Feed you slowly til your tummy expands to normal size again. I am here to hold you while you cry for all you’ve lost, to look and look and look into your eyes until you can see yourself in me, see we survived it mamma, you survived in me and I will tell your story, no matter the screaming denial of your many daughters that stand between you and me. I will tell your story loudly, quietly, brutally, gently, endlessly. I am here mamma. Me. Never mind them in between us. Look at me. I am here.