When I look in the mirror I see so much more than myself, I see Africa.
I tug at my hair and watch it defy gravity, each strand standing tall and proud, refusing to fall like the great pyramids in Egypt.
I caress my naturally full lips and it reminds me of a plump and juicy tropical West African fruit swinging from nearby trees.
I turn and see that my curves are slowly, calmly, and sweetly flowing like the Misi-oa-Tunya waterfall in Zimbabwe.
Then, my fiery eyes fall to my strong legs as long as the Kalahari Desert, stretching from South Africa all the way through to Angola, Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe.
I am statuesque, sculptural, beautiful, and powerful like the great landmass I come from.
I am Africa.
I know I am all of these magnificent things.
I sit by my mirror in deep thought as sorrowful reoccurring questions intrudes back into my memory.
What is my native culture?
What was the culture of my ancestors before the destructive Carving of Africa, the brutal Trans-Atlantic slave trade, or the bondage of the Middle Passage?
What were the native religions and languages of my people?
Suddenly, I look back into the mirror and notice the cowrie shell necklace that hangs from my neck.
I throw it to the ground, like followers of the Akan religion, expecting to be shown my future by casting the bones.
I begin to tap my finger against this holy shell and to me it sounds like the drumbeat of nearby drummers in a Cameroonian village.
I begin to sing to myself in words that had never passed my lips before and in a language my ears had never heard. I feel like a Gabonian diviner who provides insight to those who need it.
I begin to become certain that I am blessed, angelic, god like, and divine, like my ancestors before me.
I am Africa.
I glance back into the mirror. My eyes observe my hair strands, lips, curves, and legs once again.
Oh, how I wish to return back to my homeland:
A land of great pyramids, deep rivers, swaying fruits, diverse languages, and rich religions.
I will take in where my ancestors lived, cried, and died because they are my heritage.
I will take in where my ancestors prayed, learned, and explored because they are my heritage.
I will take in where my ancestors ruled for thousands of years as kings and queens in a great dynasty because that is my heritage.
I dream of going back to reclaim my throne as queen in the motherland.
I dream of reuniting with my beautiful brothers and sisters, who I miss so much, in hopes they will teach me the complex languages of my intelligent people, and the religion of a people who are so close to God.
I wish, I wish, I wish! Because I know I am royal, brilliant, well-made, and radiant.
I am Africa.