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Timiro Mohamed

Lemonade Freewrite | A Poem by Timiro Mohammed

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LCCMedia is excited to feature Edmonton Poet Timiro Mohamed here on ladiescorner.ca.

 

 

Lemonade Freewrite
This is an ode to the music of Solange’s right hook,
in honour of the song
written solely for the Black woman.

I know echo and all its cousins.
Know how to be it and drip in it.
Know the white of empty vibrato.
Know how to scream into a room that will still be silent,
which is to say I am familiar with being talked over.

I watch as a procession of women
walk directly into the water,
or the wet of it.
Because here in this story we remain afloat.
We are women dressed in white but still breathing,
and that is a prayer.

For the ones who know too much about
whiteness and the finality of it,
the way my ancestors lay in it,
the way it put them in the ground.
Wrapped in hands, or the white of them;
wrapped in a shroud, or the white of it.

I watch then as the mothers line up,
feel something try to claw itself up my throat.
Watch them, even in the pauses,
hold space solely for the exhale and inhale.
This is a prayer, the breath in our lungs.
They sit in their holy
recite the names of their children
like the wet rebirth of baptism.

I praise the song written solely for the Black woman.
Praise its joy.
Praise every block where even the air is heavy.
Praise everything an ocean away that fits
in the creases of a photo album.
Praise us.
Praise even the unravelling braid, even the napped-up edges.

I listen as Warsan’s words come in on the last track,
let them echo across a chasm,
exploding backward into a room:
A controlled cacophony
looping over and over,
telling me to wake up, stop losing myself in noise
or the white of it.

In my neighbourhood—which is every block
where they season the food too much
and you only eat sambuusi if there’s hot sauce in the house,
and there is always hot sauce in the house—

in my neighbourhood, everyone
is your family, is your cousin, is your habaryar,
is an ocean away, or is in it.

In my neighbourhood, we
pray that we may meet God whole.
Pray we will die ready.
Die with our children’s children holding us.

Pray that maybe then, suspended in the moments before sunrise,
we will welcome the silence.

 

 

A bit about Poet Timiro Mohamed

Timiro Mohamed is a Somali-Canadian spoken word poet and multi-disciplinary artist inspired by the generations of storytellers before her. She believes in the power of the spoken word as a means of activism and has shared words before the Canadian Senate, the Edmonton Public School Board, and both municipal and provincial governments. As part of the Breaking Ground Art Collective she co-developed an interdisciplinary theater performance exploring Blackness on the prairies through poetry, Afro-Caribbean dance and visual art. Timiro is the former City of Edmonton Youth Poet Laureate, the recipient of the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation’s Top 30 Under 30 award, and has competed nationally at the Canadian Festival of Spoken word. Her most recent collection: Incantations of Black Love which was created in collaboration with Black musicians and visual artists is “an unapologetic celebration of Black womanhood beyond … survival” (Titilope Sonuga) and includes an EP, chapbook, photo series and short film. Timiro has performed on over 100 stages across 6 cities and has had the opportunity to share the stage with Dr. Angela Davis, and Grammy award-winning artist Yasiin Bey. If you’d like to follow more of her work check out @t.imiro on Instagram.

 

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