Imagine Her Being a Butterfly

It’s hard to imagine a black woman being a butterfly in this world.
Can you imagine that?
I hope that some of you can, but I struggle to imagine it.


I think about a black woman who protested and risked her life every single day for the justice of a black man.
Unfortunately, that black woman would later be sexually assaulted and murdered by a black man.
Can you imagine that?


Then, I think about a black woman who was sleeping in the privacy and safety of her own home.
Her own home would be mistakenly invaded by the police.
She would then be brutally murdered by the police.
Can you imagine that?


I think about how a black woman’s protection is conditional.
For some black men, a black woman has to meet certain criteria points in order to have their protection and love.
At the same time, she must still be strong.
Never weak, always strong.
A black woman must listen and submit themselves to these black men in order to have some of their protection.
Can you imagine that?

I think about these things and wonder if a black woman can truly be a butterfly.
Can she fly, flutter and be free?
Or will she always be a caterpillar trapped in a unbreakable cocoon?
I would love to see a black woman be a butterfly.
It would be beautiful and glorious, but I struggle to imagine it.


She always has to meet certain standards.
She’s always expected to stand, fight, protest, protect and march.
She’s always getting attacked for doing too little or too much.
I often wonder does she even have the time and opportunity to be a butterfly?
I’m genuinely asking because I have no idea.


Can you be positive about the future of a black woman?
Can you see a black woman be free and exceed expectations?
Can you see her fly high in the sky?
Can you imagine a black woman being a butterfly?

A Black Girl’s Dream

Black girls have dreams too.

I wish I could tell you all of their dreams, but I can only tell you one black girl’s dreams.

I hope more black girls’ dreams can be shared.

But for now, it’s just one black girl’s dream I’m sharing.

I promise nothing more and nothing less.

Just one black girl’s dream.

 

This black girl has a dream that she has a choice.

She has a dream that she doesn’t always have to be strong.

She dreams of having moments of being weak and vulnerable because everyone deserves those moments.

She also dreams that she doesn’t always have to be a warrior, a nurturer or an activist.

This black girl dreams of being a dreamer, a lover or even her own woman.

She dreams of not always being in the frontlines of fighting racism and injustice.

She dreams of black men wanting to protect her rather than having her fight as well.

Or fight beside her.

Again, this is not every black girls’ dream.

Just one black girl’s dream.

 

Can a black girl dream?

Can she make her dreams become a reality?

Or is she always expected to face the harsh realities of this cruel world?

I have no idea.

I’m just sharing one black girl’s dream.

Just one black girl’s dream.

 

I would like to give thanks to my little sister Shawna for this poem. She was the inspiration behind this poem.

This poem is also dedicated to Oluwatoyin Salau, Breonna Taylor, black women and black girls. You all matter in this time of protesting, and you all deserve to be treated and protected better by everyone, especially black men.