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  • Writer's picturekaekingstories

A Black Girl's Roar

Updated: Jun 14, 2020

A Poem about identity and resiliency

She was born from a CaCao tree,

Sun in her bones, caramel molasses for skin,

Her hair grew like the thick congo forest,

And her teeth shined like polished african ivory. She was wild girl.

Untouched by the civilization of colonized beauty, she prowled until she heard them tell her she would do better in captivity.

Lion became prey to systems not meant for wild things.

She was tame girl.

Tame girl learned that chocolate covered skin was bitter and that the zoo keepers didn’t put halos on shrub-hair .

Tame-girl swallowed her roar and learned to whimper, to make herself small so they didn’t approach ‘well-meaning’ whips.

She went to sleep with savannas in her mind and her heart dancing to a village of djembes. The magician who gave her feral eyes woke her up for His grand finale, but she was afraid her cage made her smell like a cheap parlour trick

And not everyone believes in magic.

She stopped the magician, begged to be turned into a rabbit or a dove, begged not be dangerous, to be easier to love.

He wanted to make her the magic in His wand, but she wanted to be seen.

He showed her the stage and whispered that crowds will never stay, but he would always have His cards, always have His name.

Softly, He tells her to be a girl who challenged the flames without a stage, and whose spirit He could never place in his hat.

So the magician asked, who will she be, a tent or the sky?

She answered, “I will be the magic the magic that’s in a smile, or the twinkle of an eye,

the beauty in resilience, serenity of a pond,

I will be the power of a song, a mustard seed of faith,

the voice in the desert, and as weightless as a bird,

I will be a black girl’s roar, a mighty cry to generations,

that we are still wild things, very real,

and very dangerous.”

image by Diana Simumpande

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