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“Not Far From the Tree”: A Poem

By Destiny Harris


Above cultivated humid soil, I ascend soaking in optimism.

Underneath this soil, beads of courage are knotted into all of my fibrous roots.

Through these roots, I am able to form a thick heart in this hollow trunk.

From this trunk, hunger for self-control dangles in my mind like these scaly branches of evergreen needles.

On these needles, silky black masked birds whistle wisdom into the bark in my ears.

Beneath this bark, natural oils ooze to extinguish poisonous insects and fungus attempting to impair me with bitterness.

With these oils, even the sharpest of blades cannot counteract my rapid expansion for prosperity.

Following this expansion, incorruptible clusters of chartreuse flowers bloom like the birth of my friends and family.




Destiny Harris is an Ally (Central Florida ’22) and currently serves as the Diversity Outreach Assistant for the Zebra Coalition. You can learn more about her through her website.  

This piece is part of Public Allies’ campaign to highlight voices of Black Allies, alumni, staff, and partners throughout Black History Month.