POEM: The Great Internal Debate

By Nisha Chantel
SOTG Love + Sex Editor

Black women love. It’s what we are taught to do from birth. We love.

In the face of everything, we are taught to love.
What else are we taught to do? Forgive. We forgive.
Even when forgiveness will leave us empty, we forgive. Why?

“You are stronger.”
“We don’t worry about you.”
“You can handle it.”
These are the messages we receive from the womb.

Where does this leave us?
Searching for fulfillment, understanding, joy…home.
Black women have no home.
Everyone else has a movement to find home.
Our movements make a comfortable home for…others.
We feel guilty for wanting this permanent residence.
It’s selfish. There are bigger matters.

Our men are dying in the streets.
Wait, so are our women.
But, we can’t be too loud.
It will take away. It will look like discord.

We must focus.

The system is trying to take our attention off of more pressing matters.
Police brutality, systemic racism, corrupt politics…

Wait, don’t those things affect us:
along with paternalism, partner violence, sexual assault, and misogynoir?

Stop! Where is your loyalty?

#SayHerName:
#TiarahPoyau
#TanishaAnderson
#RekiaBoyd
#NatashaMcKenna
#SandraBland
#KorrynGaines
#JoyceQuaweay….and countless others.

I will not forget you.

Editor’s Note: This was a free-written poem inspired by an episode of the “Politically Re-Active” podcast, hosted by comedians W. Kamau Bell and Hari Kondabolu, titled, “Black Liberation in the Hour of Chaos,” featuring dream hampton. During the interview segment, hampton effortlessly slays conventions and blew my mind with her brand of honesty. She also highlighted often overlooked and overshadowed black women—who have sacrificed themselves for our collective freedoms. dream hampton is easily one of my favorite people—perfectly imperfect, complicated, brilliant, fearless and, most importantly, human.


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Nisha Chantel serves as Stay On The GoMagazine’s Sex+Love Editor.You can find Nisha on social media on Twitter and Instagram.

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POEM: The Great Internal Debate

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