Sunday, September 25, 2011

Still We Rise

There are times in every ones lives when one could use some hope and encouragement. Life seems bleak, the future seems uncertain and scary and you desperately want to see the light at the end of the seemingly never ending tunnel. We have all been there and the key to survival is persistence. I look at the situation of my country Pakistan now, and observe how the dark clouds of floods and dengue are enveloping our green and white flag. Then there are more personal examples also, of one of my two younger brothers who just had knee surgery two days back who could also use some hope that inshAllah all would eventually be well.

Keeping in mind how hope is needed both on a macroeconomic scale and a mircoeconomic one, I want to have the honor of sharing a beautiful poem full of hope and inspiration by one of my favorite poets Maya Angelou. The poem was written as a defiance against African American oppression, ferociously stating that no matter how much others would try to oppress the African Americans, they would still rise and overcome the obstacles placed in front of them. It showcases how proud Angelou is to declare herself as black and that they as a nation would rise to be free and won't let their color oppress them. Considering how America is now governed by an African American president, it suffices to say that these valiant words have loudly rung true. Bravo!

You may write me down in history,
With your bitter, twisted lies.
You may trod me in the very dirt,
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells,
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard.
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines,
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefullness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you? 
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds,
At the meeting of my thighs.

Out of the huts of history's shame,
I rise.
Up from a past that's rooted in pain,
I rise.
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear,
I rise.
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear,
I rise.
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise.
I rise. 
I rise.

We too shall rise again as a nation. Bumps on the road are there to make us stronger. God bless.

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