Thoughtful Thursday: Farewell, Women’s History Month

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Thoughtful Thursday: Farewell, Women’s History Month

On our last Thoughtful Thursday in Women’s History Month  we celebrate the work of three wonderful poets:  the wonderfully accomplished and prolific June Jordan (1936–2002); the brilliant British poet and activist Warsan Shire (b.1988), who is most widely known as the poet whose work was featured in Beyonce’s visual album Lemonade; and the young talented poet and writer Alexandra Elle (b.1993).  Hope you’ve enjoyed this month of great women poets.  Share these poems with your children and enjoy.

 

freedom

give your truth

wings.

let it go.

let it fly.

Alexandra Elle

Backwards

for Saaid Shire

The poem can start with him walking backwards into a room.
He takes off his jacket and sits down for the rest of his life;
that’s how we bring Dad back.
I can make the blood run back up my nose, ants rushing into a hole.
We grow into smaller bodies, my breasts disappear,
your cheeks soften, teeth sink back into gums.
I can make us loved, just say the word.
Give them stumps for hands if even once they touched us without consent,
I can write the poem and make it disappear.
Step-Dad spits liquor back into glass,
Mum’s body rolls back up the stairs, the bone pops back into place,
maybe she keeps the baby.
Maybe we’re okay kid?
I’ll rewrite this whole life and this time there’ll be so much love,
you won’t be able to see beyond it.

You won’t be able to see beyond it,
I’ll rewrite this whole life and this time there’ll be so much love.
Maybe we’re okay kid,
maybe she keeps the baby.
Mum’s body rolls back up the stairs, the bone pops back into place,
Step-Dad spits liquor back into glass.
I can write the poem and make it disappear,
give them stumps for hands if even once they touched us without consent,
I can make us loved, just say the word.
Your cheeks soften, teeth sink back into gums
we grow into smaller bodies, my breasts disappear.
I can make the blood run back up my nose, ants rushing into a hole,
that’s how we bring Dad back.
The poem can start with him walking backwards into a room.

Warsan Shire

July 4, 1974

Washington, D.C.

At least it helps me to think about my son
a Leo/born to us
(Aries and Cancer) some
sixteen years ago
in St. John’s Hospital next to the Long Island
Railroad tracks
Atlantic Avenue/Brooklyn
New York

at dawn

which facts
do not really prepare you
(do they)

for him

angry
serious
and running through the darkness with his own

becoming light

June Jordan

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