There are few things more beautiful than a fearless woman of color and Warsan Shire is just that. The 22 year-old Kenyan born Somali poet and writer lives in London. She considers herself an artistic activist and has words that have moved readers around the world. She has performed here in the U.S., South Africa and all over Europe. Her work has been translated into Italian and Somali.
In any language, Shire’s words can get to the core of how we’re feeling. This morning we are drawing motivation from one of her poems, “for women who are ‘difficult’ to love.” The last line especially, has a message for any woman who has ever doubted her boldness.
you are a horse running alone
and he tries to tame you
compares you to an impossible highway
to a burning house
says you are blinding him
that he could never leave you
want anything but you
you dizzy him, you are unbearable
every woman before or after you
is doused in your name
you fill his mouth
his teeth ache with memory of taste
his body just a long shadow seeking yours
but you are always too intense
frightening in the way you want him
unashamed and sacrificial
he tells you that no man can live up to the one who
lives in your head
and you tried to change didn’t you?
closed your mouth more
tried to be softer
less volatile, less awake
but even when sleeping you could feel
him travelling away from you in his dreams
so what did you want to do love
split his head open?
you can’t make homes out of human beings
someone should have already told you that
and if he wants to leave
then let him leave
you are terrifying
and strange and beautiful
something not everyone knows how to love.