Stay With Me; Her Empire, Her Reality

Last year, I wrote a love poem about colonialism and last Spring, this spoken word became a part of visual art as well.

I am extremely happy to finally share images of a painting created by Sierra Edd. Sierra Edd, a Diné artist is a sophomore at Brown University who studies Ethnic Studies and Visual Arts. I have had the pleasure to experience her wonderful talents and presence during my senior year at Brown University through our shared involvement in the Native Americans and Brown and poet community. If you would like to learn more about her art or purchase any of her masterpieces visit her site at
Her Empire, Her Reality, pictured below depicts just that- a girl bound to empire in brilliant hues of browns and blues.

Her Empire
Her Empire,
Her Reality
Her Reality, Sierra Edd

I am still so honored that Sierra approached me about using an excerpt (below) from my poem for her incredible painting that adds to Native Re-appropriation and decolonization.

“You come from your western coast and colonize me

Caress my shore with your finger-tips

One-two-three step you disrupt my stillness charmingly

The shadows of the leaves on trees cover your ship

And you press your body into hot sticky sand

We are in there process of decolonizing our minds while out bodies

remain bound to Empire.”

This a snippet of my poetry that I am extremely proud of. Just as art inspires art and sharing, I have decided to share the full version of this poem which I have provided subsequently. One thing I am still working through is the reality that once you publish a poem it’s out there and people are free to interpret it as they please. Also, that sometimes by the time a poem is out in the open it might not accurately portray the place that you are in now spiritually/mentally/emotionally. Regardless, someone once told me that that’s okay, because it was real for a given moment in time or helped inspired something even greater and intersectional.

-Stay with Me- (Full Poem Text)

Her painting, Her Empire, Her Reality is currently featured at the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America (CSREA) art exhibit on Native Re-appropriation at Brown University. If you make it up to Providence, Rhode Island any time soon I recommend checking it out at the CSREA at Hillel. Next time I’m at Brown I will definitely try to see it!



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