Become as quiet as the space between your ribs, so you can learn why trees wear their hair underground. All the mothers in you know this secret. That’s why you innerstand how to braid a path to freedom on your daughter’s head, so she will never be ashamed of crowning it with an Afro or Bantu knots or canerows or dreadlocks.
When she sits in front of a principal and later an HR manager who says that her hairstyle is inappropriate, she will look out the window and see a tree, watching, listening. She will stand tall where she sits. She will remember that your fingers in her hair taught her that roots became routes to mental emancipation.
So when Babylon, like a raging bulldozer, tramples over your daughter’s rights to wear her hair as she pleases, when it wields shears like a weapon and turns her scalp into a scarred hill, woman, don’t let the oppressors see you cry. Remember.
Axe swings at a tree.
You see the fall. Forests know
the roots are standing.
Subscribe for new writing
Sign up to receive new pieces of writing as soon as they are published as well as information on competitions, creative grants and more.