Lynette Yiadom-Boakye

This is a different kind of alone, girl

The kind you are relieved you don’t enjoy

After all

You thought you were made for this. 

You who traipse through foreign lands to meet strangers

You who never run except more deeply into herself


Now quarantine brings this different kind of alone girl

She who sees couples walk casually by on sidewalks through her window

She who sees photos posted on IG of people alone…but they are not selfies


Is anyone else really alone, girl? 


And now you who thought you were brave

A shadow walker, you said,

Meet the One who asks as you shimmy alone in your kitchen to Afrobeats 

“Don’t you wanna dance with somebody?” 


But you listen here alone girl 

You who make daily calls to check on people because you can 

You who is a first responder of all their pain 

You who knows we are all alone, really

You think you aren’t made for this? 


Men may live and die alone, revered

While she is forgotten, a pity 

She who swims deep with whales mystifying folks when she comes up for air

She who walks through valleys of her own shadows and flinches not


Come, let us be together alone, girl 


Take deep inhales

Breathe in all your breathtaking solitude 

Make more tea

Exhale before you sip on that hot mug of silence steaming in your hands


Pray for the one you know will come 

to shimmy with you in aromatic kitchens

walk quietly beside you on sidewalks past strangers windows. 

Pray they are also growing quietly more confident in their aloneness 

Readying for the order to lift 

Readying to see the new world in 20/20 vision

Readying like Rilke to become something

“…to become world, to become world…for another’s sake”


Until then my fierce alone girl

Be solitude

Opaque and undisputed

Light another candle

Become all flame