An Ode to Black Motherhood

Tonight I witnessed a black mother cry

Real, strong and genuine tears

That left her speechless

Over her 7-year-old son

A star scholar

He was rising as a leader in his class

Always so enthusiastic to learn

To show the class what he knows

To help his friends if they get stumped on a question

I’d seen this mother cry tears over her son before

But never had they evoked tears from my own eyes

Raising a black boy comes with

A constant anxiety

A throbbing heart

A fear of what the world might do to him

As the world fears his very existenceblack motherhood

I sat in front of this mother as tears began to form in my eyes

I felt her fear

Recalling Tamir, Trayvon, Jordan and so many more

Trying to feel for just a moment, how hard this must be

How could she not bear tears for the burden of black motherhood?

I touched her arm and assured her

That Terrell is soaring through every aspect of school as our new class Vice President who is excelling in reading, math and is quite the critical thinker

I felt her joy

Recalling Obama, Mandela, Martin, Malcolm and so many more

Effortlessly feeling for a moment, just how proud she must be

How could she not bear tears for the blessings of black motherhood?

I understood every tear that fell from her eyes

Each of those tear-filled, speechless pauses as her words were swallowed by relief

To raise a black son to simply stay alive in our streets is a blessing

But we are not settling for that

Our mothers will stop at nothing less than our sons soaring

Against any odds

Tonight I witnessed a black mother cry

Real, strong and genuine tears

That left her speechless

Over her 7-year-old son

How could she not bear the tears, the burdens, the blessings, the joys of black motherhood?

…And where would we be without them?


By: Naa-Shorme, Creator of Write to Live


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