Monday, April 19, 2010

Sojourner Truth

Assignment 19, write a poem about a person. Title the poem with their proper name)

Your were born Isabella;

changed it to Sojourner Truth

when you learned the word Sojourner

from being read the Bible

when you, yourself, couldn’t read.

You sued your son’s master;

demanded his return from Alabama.

You won, even though as author said

“Slaves didn’t do such things!

Women didn’t do such things!”

But you, in spite, of expectations


Peter was freed

and returned to your care.

You went to New York,

because you heard black children

could take schooling there.

Your son, you vowed,

would learn to manipulate words,

use them as the liberation tools

God and you meant them to be.

When he was 18;

he took a job on a whale boat

sent you a few letters from far

off places, when they stopped

you assumed he died.

Then God told you in a dream

to travel and speak about your

life in bondage.

You did as the Lord instructed,

being a pious woman

you could do nothing else.

You gathered your few belongings

and your lone quarter, took the ferry

to Long Island, made your living

working the fields, doing laundry,

earning wages and lodging wherever,

however you could.

You spoke of a life in chains,

of the master’s lash and misogyny.

You spoke- fearless- to people

who sought to make you fearful.

You met Lincoln,

shook his hand,

recounted the tale in letter to friend.

I wonder if you felt like Cinderella

at the ball.

You are what

this little, colored girl

aspires to be.

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