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About the Poem

This poem was originally written for an ethics class in which the assignment was to write in any form a paper that describes your public philosophy and where it comes from.

She Who Knows No Boundaries

I was raised by a . . .
Strong, religious, educated,
"I marched on Washington and take nothing from no one"
Type of woman.

I was born into a . . .
"Come correct or don't come at all,"
"Accept nothing but the best,"
"If he can't use your comb, don't bring him home,"
Kind of family.

I lived where the village raised the child,
Went to school where the students and teachers feared my "angry Black"
And learned that delicate balance of what Du Bois called "double

I have tried to . . .
Learn something new everyday,
Always lift as I climb,
And be grateful for what I've been blessed with.

I was taught to love the Lord,
Have always known and given unconditional love,
And am finally learning to love myself.

I have grown to be
A proud Spelman woman
With a spiritual base,
Who isn't quite religious,
But won't forget who's in control.

I live by the rules of . . .
Treating others as I want to be treated,
Remembering who I am and what I represent,
And understanding that "to whom much is given, much is required."

I have learned that I will always represent "affirmative action at its
best" to someone who believes that I am innately inferior;
Have grown to understand that when and where I enter, the entire Black
race enters with me;
And can always expect that in a sea of White faces, when I am asked for my
perspective, I will speak for the whole Black race.

I strive in every way to . . .
Lead by example,
Always give back,
And remember the shoulders upon which I stand.

I am guided by the philosophy . . .
That I descended from royalty with a rich history,
So I must be innately regal and capable of greatness;
That the Lord created me in His image,
So I must be divine in some ways;
That my mother didn't raise a fool,
So I must be wise.

I was told . . .
"A smart person learns from her own mistakes, a wise person learns from
the mistakes of others,"
"Don't look where you fell, but where you slipped,"
And "No matter how long the night, the morning is sure to come."

I was raised by these thoughts,
Live by these philosophies,
And follow them when I can.

I do what I do because I can acknowledge that I have become a . . .
Strong, spiritual, educated,
"I graduated from Spelman College and take nothing from no one"
Type of woman.

Born into a . . .
"Come correct or don't come at all,"
"Accept nothing but the best,"
"If he can't use your comb, don't bring him home,"
Kind of family.

And have learned that . . .
You will kill more bees with honey than with vinegar,
You cannot judge because you are not God,
And you can please and love no one until you can please and love yourself.

It is with these ideas and this understanding of myself
That I have grown into
What my name and survival tactics have produced . . .

A forthright, dedicated individual who knows NO BOUNDARIES!!!
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© 1999 LaTiefa Alston Please respect the rights of the author and Passions in Poetry. If you would like to use this poem on your own web page, please contact the Author. Thank you.

6 Visitor Comments

You're looking towards the future, even though the past follows you around. You have a strong sense of realtiy. Which has become your best assest in life. Would we all learned some honest humility now and then. I enjoyed reading you, felt the firm faith you possess. Thank you for your color's of life.
This piece is very thought provoking and insightful. One of my favorite poems. And, to think it started as an Ethic's assignment and had such a beautiful outcome.
A most powerful and inspiring piece of writing. Wonderful.
LaTiefa, This is a beautiful writing, one of truth and passion. One which shows the real you, a very beautiful person, who gives a shining example to others; words to live by no matter what the color. I am proud of you and the stand you take. May your words be ever heard. Great job in my humble opinion.
I believe in the same "truths"
It is a very meaningful poem.

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