Audre Lorde

The woman thing

The hunters are back from beating the winter’s face
in search of a challenge or task
in search of food
making fresh tracks for their children’s hunger
they do not watch the sun
they cannot wear its heat for a sign
of triumph or freedom;
The hunters are treading heavily homeward
through snow that is marked
with their own footprints.
emptyhanded, the hunters return
snow-maddened, sustained by their rages.

In the night after food they may seek
young girls for their amusement. Now
the hunters are coming
and the unbaked girls flee from their angers.
All this day I have craved
food for my child’s hunger
Emptyhanded the hunters come shouting
injustices drip from their mouths
like stale snow melted in sunlight.

And the womanthing my mother taught me
bakes off its covering of snow
like a rising blackening sun.