His hand, which had written and perished 
Long before I was born
Gave me the mother that I never had,
The encouragement that I never knew.
He became my father, guide in writing,
in life.

I had run up the stairs, which were to beget me success,
Stepped over splinters and tacks 
Only to trip
Where there was no light,
At a dead end with no hope.

My fictitious, but cognitively
Ever- present mother screamed,
“Don’t fall now!”
I straightened myself back up
After my dream deferred exploded 
Into a teary dissatisfied mess.

My recovery was due to his wisdom left on a page
For me to read between the lines
what had a crystal’s transparency, 
Reflecting the sun and
Blaring in my face. Lines from which
I was taught of ancient greatness, of the rivers
That have spilled and spill through my veins,
Yet survived.

Rejoicing, I flung my arms wide,
Ecstatic because the binds 
That had attempted to keep me from
Expressing my dark-skinned self 
Without fear or shame 
had been broken!

a poem by Nakeysha in honor of my favorite poet Langston Hughes.