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Danielle Rigby


Torn apart by Pam Tjanara-Williams


dedication: for all black women taken from their mothers
is this what you’ve done to us
took us away
from the warmth
of our mother’s arms
screaming with pain
I cried for years
Seeing my mother
Cling to the last feel
Of my arms
As I clung to her

At that place
They taught me to
Rise when the bell rang
Strip the bed and mop the floor
So long away
I thought of you
and how I missed you all

all I wanted
was the feeling of love
that only the family
have for you
they told me you were unfit
to care for me
but I know
you would have loved me
and that’s more
important than anything

I’ve searched for you
Through piles of papers
And long corridors
Of unseeing faces
With racist blocking walls
I cry for you at night
My mother
So strong and silent
I wail for the loss
And the pain
They inflicted on us both

Now I sit lonely
Here in this darkened room
Remember how you were
Gentle dark face
Lined with sorrow
Did you sit as I
Sometimes do
And think of how
Much I might have missed you

I have a daughter now
Olive skin like yours
And eyes so black
You fall into their pools
I look at her
And remember you
And how I might
Have looked to you
But its ok
And though I never knew you mother
I remember your arms warm and gentle
Rocking me to sleep at night
When darkness sometimes left me frightened.

Submitted: Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Edited: Tuesday, July 16, 2013

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