a poem by peninnah ng'ang'a, Kenya

A black woman is taught to be strong
resilient, humble and preserved
"It is okey"
"It gonna be alright"
Is the line of every storm.

You see
its beautiful to be bold
not to pour every time it gets a little cold
its cool if you can reserve all those conflicting emotions you have going on
be poised and proud.

That's right
am a black woman
super strong at that
but am tired of having to be brave all the time.

I don't want to be scared of hurt
i want it to be alright should i choose to cry
i don't want to be of perfect mind all the time
i want to be and not mind being wrong sometimes .

I don't want to be too strong to you or i
for you and i
I don't want to be too strong not to fight you or i
for you and i.

Am done being okey when i am far from okey.
i want to be okey if i ain't okey sometimes.

So don't switch off the phone i might decide to apologize after five
don't close those arms i might need you to hold me tight
don't lock the door i might be coming back home tonight.
Baby am done being okey without you and i.

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