Poetry is an art form that is older than literature, itself, and dates back to ancient times. It is used as a form of communication. Poetry is words that flow into each other, a melody of passion that expresses emotions hidden deep within. It is a cathartic expression, a healing exercise to transform trauma onto a page that soothes, a way to remember and relive what was. Each year the month of April is set aside as National Poetry Month, a time to celebrate poets and their craft.

Our features editor Angela Kinamore who has been fueled by poetry most of her life is a passionate thinker and creative architect of the written word. Here she offers three of her most beloved poems to share with you:

Remember Him

When mother’s gone and father’s gone
and there’s no one to hear you
When you feel all alone, lost and confused
and can’t find your way in what feels
like endless darkness

When you’re longing to love
and there’s no one to give it to,
When no one seems to understand you
and you can’t get yourself together

When you want something—anything
to fill the emptiness in your life
When you long for peace of mind
and can’t find peace anywhere

There’s no human need
that God can’t fill.
He is your mother
and father, your sister and brother
Your guide and friend

When you can’t count on anyone
you can most certainly count on Him
When you don’t know what to do with yourself
or your life, tell Him
and He will lead you to your true purpose
here on Earth
and show you a role only you can play

He will take your hand
And walk each step with you
And what God gives you
no one can take away.

If you trust in him and become
one with Him, He will be one with you
And there’s nothing you can’t do
For He knows what’s in your heart and soul
He will show you the amazing treasure
hidden deep within your heart
For God is everywhere, in everything
and in everyone.

You know life would be so much easier and happier
if only we would remember Him…

Remembering Grandma
(For the late Mattie Lee Kinamore at age 98)

They called her Mother or Mama
that’s who she was to all who entered her space
Those who lost their mothers were especially
drawn to her and adopted Grandma as their own
She was full of love with enough to spare for everyone
never seeking anything in return

Grandma had a great love for life, for people
She adored children and had no problem
disciplining them without raising her voice or hand
believing if you spare the rod, you spoil the child

Everyone loved Grandma
And I enjoyed many happy summers
with her in Cincinnati, Ohio
She taught me how to make homemade ice cream
and cupcakes which she sold to neighborhood
children for a dime

I didn’t realize how much Grandma taught me
until I was much older
At age seven, I couldn’t understand the peculiar
things she did
like rising at four each morning to begin her day
And talking to Spirit as if to a close friend at her side
She would greet Black folks with a warm “Good Morning”
when they passed her by on the street

Once while waiting for the church bus
an older Black man walked by without even looking her way
She watched him go by and looked at the ground with sadness
and said: “Negroes don’t speak anymore,”
As if a sacred tradition was now lost
her words remain with me to this day
As I notice other customs we no longer do
I once told Grandma I wanted to sing
“You better sing for the Lord,” she warned wisely
I couldn’t see it then
but I understand those words now
When I lift up my voice in song to God
my spirit is renewed and filled with
inner strength and joy

I smile to myself as I see how I’ve taken on
some of Grandma’s “strange” ways
like rising at four in the morning
talking to Spirit
and greeting Black folks who pass by on the street

Always With You
(Love from the Other Side)

Fear not
Cry not
For all is in Divine Order
We are with you even as we speak
Closer than hands and feet

We’re here
You’re there
Both helping to usher in a new day
To bring God’s glory closer to Earth

Fret not
Fear not
For we are always with you
And so is He