For The Mamas on Frontlines with their Fists Raised up High

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We have stood on front lines

with our fists raised up on high

we’ve flooded city streets

in a collective stream

heart to heart and side by side

we have made ourselves allies

offering up personal sacrifice

we have filled up petition lines

time after time…. after time

 

We’ve seen movements

swell, wax, wane, recede, and grow

we have had our children in tow

or sometimes have left them home

explaining on bended knee,

     Just why mama’s gotta leave

because if mama’s don’t fight for the children, then who will?

I said,

                            if mama’s don’t fight for the children, then who will?

 

We’ve learned to navigate the political currents

placing pressure on PMs, MPs and MLAs

cabinet ministers, and deputies of whatever department keeps messing up

some of us have broken man made laws and have gone and got ourselves arrested

we have sat in vigil of our own

sometimes our flickering candles we hold…. are the only light we see

Yet we hold the belief that one day the darkness will have no choice but to recede

we have stood in defense of lands, of waters,

for our sons,

for our daughters

for something bigger than ourselves

 

No matter the historical struggle from which we rise

many of us have realized

we are in this together, and when we collectively defy

we actively redefine…. love

Sometimes that love gives us the ability to move mountains

and other times it gives us enough drive to persist for one more day

In the face of any revolution

there are many pauses, stalls, and starts

there are many tears, unspoken of fears, and the breaking of hearts

Sometimes if you listen hard enough you can actually hear it…..

the sound of your heart trying not to give up on itself

Because let’s be honest darling,

sometimes fighting for change is a lot like putting yourself through hell

 

So what is it that makes us persist?

When its apparent that ignorance walks hand in hand with bliss

Is it because

sometimes doing nothing just don’t sit right with the soul?

or that we believe power is not absolute

and there is no submitting to those who appear to be in control?

Do we stand for treaties and promises made and broken long ago?

For the voiceless? For the choiceless?

Or are we grounded by science or facts?

Perhaps our faith demands that we move to react?

Whichever it is, there is strength in our choice to stand together

 

One thing I do know for sure to be true

is that I would not be standing and talking freely as I do

if not for those who came before me

because they did not admit defeat

they stood grounded in what they believed

they fought, they bled, the sacrificed

and it is because of this that I can sleep at night

knowing all of these actions are not done in vain

because I stand on the shoulders of these giants

and the next generation will one day say the same

and the giants that they speak of, well my dear they will be us

so never underestimate

the power of your voice

or the strength in a collective moving kind of love

 

 

Wuujo Asonalah,

Helen

Post Script: I know it is hard to hold on to the light and feel like you are making a difference but I am always reminded that change is long term and to place my faith in that. It is because actually because change is long term that every action we make today is crucial and necessary… You are needed.

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