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Poem of the Week: Audre Lorde

Audre Lorde was an inspirational voice and a critic of the second-wave feminist movement. She debated that second-wave feminism focused mostly on heterosexual, white, middle-class women instead of shifting to intersectional feminism. Lorde was a black, female, and lesbian poet whose works focused on Civil Rights, feminism, and sexuality. Her words still ring true today. This poem is called, “A Woman Speaks.” 

“A Woman Speaks”

Moon marked and touched by sun   
my magic is unwritten 
but when the sea turns back 
it will leave my shape behind.   
I seek no favor 
untouched by blood 
unrelenting as the curse of love   
permanent as my errors 
or my pride 
I do not mix 
love with pity 
nor hate with scorn 
and if you would know me 
look into the entrails of Uranus   
where the restless oceans pound. 
 
I do not dwell 
within my birth nor my divinities   
who am ageless and half-grown   
and still seeking 
my sisters 
witches in Dahomey 
wear me inside their coiled cloths   
as our mother did 
mourning. 
 
I have been woman 
for a long time 
beware my smile 
I am treacherous with old magic   
and the noon’s new fury 
with all your wide futures   
promised 
I am 
woman 
and not white.

 

 

 

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