I think of Phyllis often. Have her on my wall, in fact.
She possessed this measure of magical beauty.
Not because her skin was golden. Not because her hair was fine.
But, because, when she spoke my truth came pouring out.
The truth that talented women know.
It’s not easier having gifts.
Talents are tokens draping heavily around the neck.
People need you to be their star until you feel real.
Billie knew this. Whitney learned.
They lived in shadows, with them anyway.
And died in them.
People always say if Phyllis only knew
How much she was loved….
Maybe she knew and still couldn’t stay.