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Mama Tayé’s Elder’s Prayer – Day 109 + 7: The World Reacted

Mama Tayé’s Elder’s Prayer – Day 109 + 7: The World Reacted

The sun glistens over the frozen ice and drips a nation’s tears.
In shock and awe, held emotionally tangled for a day, a week ago when the wait was agony and the reading spoke ill of the dead.
In silence they waited and held hands until the word came, the shouts from 400 years of soul anguish came from a deep place and the people refused to go home.
In solidarity around the world the streets filled in a holiday week that declared no more, no business as usual, no system as usual, upset it all we will do.
In space of righteous anger over unjust laws and systems that let murderers with badges go scot free, the people marched armed with signs and the energy of not wanting another 12 year old shot dead in a drive by for playing with a toy.
In serenity they stood around campus bonfires to pray for justice and energy to keep going day after day, night after night, to dismantle something that refused to give.
In somber realization they watched the armored tanks roll down American streets as black buildings burned and white buildings gained art work.
In solidarity they took to a week of even greater disobedience from marches to die ins to taking over malls and making sure black Friday and black football was about black lives.
In service they cared for the wounded, spoke to the hurting, taught the children, planned meetings, and saw their message reach the world.
In strategy they took the message to the powers that be and stood face-to-face with evil to declare we will not fear.
In strength their numbers grew with hues from vanilla to espresso all shouting out with children’s toys that Black Lives Matter and we aren’t going anywhere.
On this 109+7 day we stand, we stand, we stand.
Asé

Mama Tayé

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The Burden

This isn't mine anymore

What?

This.

She stretched out her hands
the parcel neatly wrapped
brown paper
with a
red bow

What is this?

Take it, it is your's.

But

No, it is not mine to carry
Anymore

What do you mean?

I mean that I am giving it back
it was never mine
anyway

I don't understand

You never did.

I don't want it.

Take it.

No.

So she
dropped
it
right
where
she stood.

And turned
and walked away.

The package was never her's to hold.
So she let it go.


Tayé Foster Bradshaw is the poet's nom de plumme. She resides in a suburb of St. Louis surrounded by her family, her books, her pens, and her lattes.

This poem is inspired by the lives and burdens of many women, particularly women of color, who are forced to carry the cares, thoughts, and expectations of others without regard to their own wants, needs, and health. This poem is a release.




Black Mama Tears

It rained this afternoon

Loud claps of thunder

Almost couldn't see the rain

For my tears falling down

Black Mama Tears

too many

dying

in their sleep

on a run

at a store

too many

stopped

just walking

just working

just breathing

It rained today

And I couldn't see

for all the weeping

of

Black

Mamas.

Bridges by Tayé Foster Bradshaw

Walking
across time
Bringing me to you
or
you to me
over a way through-
tears and fears
to bring us to
the other side of possibility
probability
reality
reality
crossing
structures
through
over
under
hold on
don't look down
look down
walk on over
dance on over
wheels on over
over over over
water and roads and
all the modes that
bring
me
to
you
or





you
to
me
collectively
connected
collaborating
across
the great
wide
way


©2016. Tayé Foster Bradshaw Group, Antona Smith. All Rights Reserved.

Bridges used to scare me as a little girl. In the town where I grew up, in order to get from my neighborhood over to the swimming pool or summer activities, we walked. I was always fine until we reached the crest of the hill and that looming structure that connect roads-to-roads, over cars zooming beneath, promising me opportunity on the other side, if I just trusted the weight of my tiny skinny nine-year-old self against the wind blowing or the sun streaming over this manmade steal structure.  My l…