Forgive me, Imani, for leaving tonight.
Forgive me for spending so few minutes lying beside you, my palm resting gently on your burning chest.
Forgive me for not being able to slow down, with my touch, or my own even breathing, the fierce beating of your heart, trapped in an abode on fire.
Forgive me for not delivering the inspirational speech I had recited to you in my mind on the train ride from work, about how important it was for me to stand with our Muslim brothers and sisters.
Forgive me for only saying that I was going to meet your friend from preschool, who is walking this evening’s march, so that her grandparents will be allowed to come to America, to see their grandchildren grow, to love and nurture them.
Forgive me for only saying that daddy would take good care of you, when I had meant to tell you how beautiful your father is, what a tremendous gift it is to be the wife of a man of such integrity and principle.
Forgive me for not telling you how he looked at me last night, when I raged in the middle of the living room against this world in which we have suddenly found ourselves.
May he, too, forgive me for not saying often enough that the kindness and acceptance with which he embraces who I am, and the way he steps in and steps up, are the very reason I can be the revolutionary this moment in history requires me to be.
Forgive me for leaving you for the crowds.
Last night, we walked for water and for Mother Earth.
Tonight, we walk for our Muslim brothers and sisters.
Tomorrow, we will answer the call for the day’s resistance.
And so it will go on.
Until we have arrived.
And we will arrive.
In the meantime, please, forgive me.