“Exquisite butterflies trapped in an evil honey toiling away their lives in an era, a century, that did not acknowledge them, except as “the mule of the world”
– Jean Toomer
There were women who never got to express their inner passion. Trapped in an era – the early 1920s – when most women were only given an opportunity to be mothers, sisters and daughters. For black women (the quote above was written about black women) it was an even harder time as a slave, baby producer for their masters or prostitutes.
Despite the creative spirit that lived within they had very few choices. They could have been writers, singers, artists, painters but many of them died with that passion buried deep within and totally unexpressed.
To honor them during Black History Month in America and after reading Alice Walker most of yesterday (happy birthday Ms Walker) I wanted to express my gratitude to those women. Their passion was passed on through their sons and daughters and we are lucky enough now to be able to choose to follow what makes us happy. Unfortunately, not everyone chooses that choice.
As I consider their sacrifice and my freedom embracing the opportunities that open to me is my only option.