Poems by Peggy Trotter Dammond Preacely

THERE ARE THOSE LIKE JOHN (an ode to John Lewis) [PDF]

She. Her. Hers. (homage to Ruth Bader Ginsberg)
Telling

 

SHE. HER. HERS. (Homage to Ruth Bader Ginsberg)

She. Her. Hers.

In lace collar

Ms. Ruth

Brooklyn wordsmith that she was

Told us in no uncertain terms

"a cage is not a pedestal "

She never knew fatigue,

was never sidetracked by defeat.

I dream that in heaven Ms. Fanny Lou Hamer conspires with Ms. Ruth

And oh the raucous that they raise!

Justice Ruth, an energy unparalleled

A clear and persistent vision, courage at every roadblock.

She born in 1933, influenced by the Holocaust

Was bourn to gift us in this new world

With her diaspora destiny

Was larger than her diminutive size.

On her shoulders ... others will continue to stand

Up for this lady of legal brilliance.

Understood by and for the masses: Notorious RBG!

Weight- lifter, direct-gazer, no nonsense-taker

Finding in stare decisis a tool,

But only as it fit her own justice bound intentions.

She our usher, our guide, our scout

Without any doubt

Blazing the trail

Creating a legal template with her life.

"Zedek, zedek, tirdof" — Justice, justice ... did SHE pursue!

© Peggy Trotter Dammond Preacely- September 26, 2020

 

TELLING

You tell me

I tell you

We tell each other

Don't be afraid!

He told her

She told him

They told them

It would be alright!

Then the shot came through the window

Heard it fly over and past us and across the room

where we slept low and on the floor on makeshift beds

(just a precaution Mama Dolly had said)

The bullet imbedded in the wall.

I told you it could happen!.

We smelled the dusky smoke of it.

This was real now: Lee County night.

Mama Dolly on the porch.

Her rifle across her knees.

Our nonviolent mantra

so quiet in our mouths.

 

Copyright © Peggy Trotter Dammond Preacely (1962)

[My poem was written in 1962 when I was teaching voter education for SNCC in rural Southwest Georgia, but I feel it is still so relevant today as we continue to observe the violence and suppression of the right to vote. From my Movement Poem Series]

 


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