14 Comments

Poetry Friday: Honoring the Free, the Wise, the Strong, and the Magical Women

poetry friday

Group of women in oil painting. Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

Group of women in oil painting. Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

Hello. Fats here.

My Poetry Friday offering for today is an excerpt from Pearl Cleage’s poem, We Speak Your Names. I discovered it through the Wild and Wise Women page on Facebook. The poem celebrates womanhood and the gift of sisterhood. Click here to read a longer excerpt of the poem. Poetry Friday round-up is made possible this week by the wise and talented Tabatha Yeatts of The Opposite of Indifference.

Because we are free women,
born of free women,
who are born of free women,
back as far as time begins,
we celebrate your freedom.

Because we are wise women,
born of wise women,
who are born of wise women,
we celebrate your wisdom.

Because we are strong women,
born of strong women,
who are born of strong women,
we celebrate your strength.

Because we are magical women,
born of magical women,
who are born of magical women,
we celebrate your magic.

[...]

We are here to speak your names
because you taught us that the search is always for
the truth
and that when people show us who they are, we
should always believe them.

We are here because you taught us
that sisterspeak can continue to be our native
tongue,
no matter how many languages we learn as we
move about as citizens of the world
and of the ever-evolving universe.

Click on the image to be taken to the interview with Filipino novelist and women's rights activist, Madam Ninotchka Rosca.

Click on the image to be taken to the interview with Filipino novelist and women’s rights activist, Madam Ninotchka Rosca.

Dr. Jane Goodall with orphan chimpanzee Uruhara at the JGI Sweetwaters Sanctuary for orphan chimpanzees in Kenya. 1996. Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

Dr. Jane Goodall with orphan chimpanzee Uruhara at the JGI Sweetwaters Sanctuary for orphan chimpanzees in Kenya. 1996. Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

8th January 1993:  Headshot portrait of African-American author Maya Angelou wearing black sweater with a pearl necklace, smiling and holding flowers in one hand.  (Photo by Stephen Matteson Jr/New York Times Co./Getty Images) Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

8th January 1993: Headshot portrait of African-American author Maya Angelou wearing black sweater with a pearl necklace, smiling and holding flowers in one hand. (Photo by Stephen Matteson Jr/New York Times Co./Getty Images) Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

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About Fats Suela

Cloud chaser. Sky walker. Tale weaver. Smile painter. Dream believer. Heart stealer. Book gatherer. Star-child of the universe.

14 comments on “Poetry Friday: Honoring the Free, the Wise, the Strong, and the Magical Women

  1. Wonderful, Fats! I love this “you taught us/that sisterspeak can continue to be our native/tongue,” There is a bond, isn’t there, of who we are and how we live? Thanks for the photos too, so full of joy.

  2. Hello, Fats! I also love the use of the word “sisterspeak.” I heard a spoken word artist (male) read a poem last night, apologizing for how women are treated as *less than* around the world. Powerful stuff.

    • Hello, Laura! Oh, I love spoken word poetry, and that must have been a beautiful piece. It is heartbreaking to read stories – fact or fiction, though they’re mostly fact – about women not being treated properly. Good to know a man has delivered a powerful message to the audience.

  3. Thank you for sharing this inspiring poem. Terrific photos, Fats!

  4. Sisterspeak – yes, we need more of it! Thank you for sharing this gift of a poem with us today.

  5. “the search is always for the truth”

    Thanks for this inspiring, empowering post, Fats!

  6. YES! I also love these lines (in the longer version):

    “We know that we are walking in footprints made
    deep by the confident strides
    of women who parted the air before them like the
    forces of nature that you are.”

  7. I immediately thought of Maya Angelou as I read the poem, even before I scrolled through to her picture! (Mother Teresa would be a good addition to the group!)

    • Hi, Mary! Oh, yes, Mother Teresa is definitely a wise and strong woman. There are so many other women, whether or not they are famous, that would be a good addition to the group – that includes you and me! ;)

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