Poem in Hand, I Would Like to Welcome You With the Following

I heard the sneers of discrimination at my schools before I heard the sonnets of poetry through their hallways.

But the first time I faced discrimination based on the color of my skin, the language I spoke at home, or some other characterization of me, I didn’t quite know the definition of the word, discrimination.

Similarly, the first time I heard my first poem, I didn’t quite know that it was poetry, either. But in each case, my feelings told me what these things were. Today they still do.

Now, I deploy words to work for me as my mother has worn every bone in her body to work for shifts over a lifetime, pushing back against any rancorous winds which would seek to tame us.

My mother’s feet are waning into the ages now, yet with each new day, she makes one thing clear:

We will not go gently into the night;

Every moment we get, is another moment we rise.


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