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Category: Black History Month

“Cornbread and Collard Greens”: Recipes for Sankofa

By Lillian Holden “Now, don’t forget to pour out the smoked turkey juice from the pot, and don’t use the turkey broth for your green. It messes up the flavor,” exclaimed my well-wishing mother over the cell phone. It had been two years since moving from underneath my parents’ roof, and after longing for a Read More

“Gardening and Sankofa”: An Essay

By Gary Williams Oftentimes during Black History Month, we tend to think of large looming figures in history. This year, I have been really reflecting on people closer to home, specifically history within my own family. The reason I have gotten into gardening is because of my grandmother, Marian Young. My grandmother came at gardening Read More

“2020 Don’t Look Back”: A Poem

  “2020 Don’t Look Back” is a spoken word piece by alum Ray Johnson (Cincinnati ’20), who performs under the name Silence Priest. This piece is part of Public Allies’ campaign to highlight voices of Black members, Alumni, staff, and partners throughout Black History Month.

“Being Black Is Lit”: A Poem

  “Being Black Is Lit” is a spoken word piece by alum Kwyn Townsend Riley (Chicago ’19). This piece is part of Public Allies’ campaign to highlight voices of Black members, Alumni, staff, and partners throughout Black History Month.

“Awakening”: A Poem

“Awakening” is a spoken word piece by alum Rajah Satterwhite (North Carolina ‘17): I gotta full beat face And a bigger waist Tip-toeing in my block heels Trying to cultivate hope so my block heals Every night I stay plotting awake These injustices too much, I don’t know how much more we can take Focusing Read More

“Race Day”: An Essay

[Content warning: Profanity] By Freda Epum You board a bus and it seems as though there is a sea of Black people. If it weren’t for the fact that your skin is brown, your hair is curly, your eyes are black and almond, and you’ve got a nice ass (or so you’ve been told), you’d think Read More

“Unity”: Poem and Painting

“Unity” is a poem and painting by Ally member Alicia Green (Central Florida ’21): The opportunity For a community to come together, to break down old walls and barriers, Letting the past teach the present, The present holding the future. It is a gift, magnified day by day, By God’s grace in my heart, and Read More

“Confidence” (A Love Letter to Black People)

“Confidence” is a love letter to Black people, written, composed, and performed by Christina Armstrong (an ‘07 alum and current staff member of our Chicago site), with support from band members: Tyrone Jackson – Bass Journey Burns – Percussion, Sound Engineering Kara Blaylock – Supporting Vocals Enjoy! This piece is part of Public Allies’ campaign Read More

“Four Tools That Can Harness Your Light”: An Essay

By John Broadway When day comes we step out of the shade, aflame and unafraid The new dawn blooms as we free it For there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it If only we’re brave enough to be it. — Amanda Gorman, 2021 Inaugural Poet I hope Amanda Gorman’s loving call for unity inspired you to be the Read More