They always call powerful women
born from the cosmos
brought to earth to heal others
Witches.
They did that to midwives,
women who could bring
new life safe into this world
straight from the door of the universe. …

Imagine
your sweet brother
hacked in the head with a machete,
skull splitting easy as a banana tree.

Imagine
your brave sister
raped, infected with HIV,
body and soul broken for life.

Imagine
your strong mother
shot in the head as she tried to fight,
a hunted lioness defending her cubs…

I wonder what the white woman
with hair half dreadlocked,
half straight as a bone
felt when the black poet told her
she couldn’t have her hair like that

not directly in so many words,
but through all the words she wrote
when another white woman
asked if she could pretty please
have her…

I see the graceful swing
of his smooth locs first,
stretching like fingers
down his muscled back;

easy sway of hips
strutting down the road,
working his orange high-viz
like it was amber-encrusted…

now he has his own time
at last,
all he wants is a small cottage
in a forest
near grandma’s place,
where they played poo-sticks
dropped faithfully into water
- rushed -
from one side of bridge to the other
- laughing -
to see them emerge
like a magic trick…

Grace

Traveler, poet, educator, yogi, activist, artist, writer, British-Jamaican Londoner living in Ghana https://soundcloud.com/gracelouisewood

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