I am still processing the surprising news that poetess Margie Shaheed is no longer with us.

It had been 20 years since I last saw her. At that time, Margie and I belonged to a spiritual writer’s group organized by a mutual friend; this is how we met. The group attended Margie’s poetry venue, Groove Drops in Newark, N.J. where she hosted an open mic for other talented poets. She supported the poetry programs I organized and was often one of the featured performers. I remember how Margie mesmerized audiences with her soul-stirring gift for poetry. She truly recognized the real grace, function of the written word as a vehicle for opening up imaginations. Margie was also blessed with a lyrical wit that really touched your heart and made your spirit dance.

Margie was extremely passionate about her work, which others found healing and uplifting. It’s amazing, how we connected again a year ago over the phone after so much time had passed.  I was unaware of Margie’s illness but I remember how she spoke so enthusiastically about her latest poetry book. Dream Catcher, and of book signings that were in the works. Margie’s infectious spirit about her book rubbed off on me, so I asked her to send me a few poetry selections for 50BOLD. Margie emailed me a couple of poems and we published them in the July issue of our publication.

I was saddened to receive the news that Margie had transitioned.  When I think of Margie, I am reminded of someone who truly loved her work and was passionate about honing her craft. She left behind a great legacy. Margie did not leave this earth with “music inside of her;” instead, she bestowed it to the world.

Margie was a poetess extraordinaire and here are the two poems we ran. Margie’s poetry celebrated being free to be, and these two works are just examples of her words of life that spoke to hungry hearts, souls, and minds.

Rest in power, my dear friend.  You’ve completed what you came here to do….

(photo taken 20 years ago) Poetess Sonia Sanchez (in purple), Angela (in black and white) and Margie (in multicolored hat next to Angela); picture courtesy of Bobbi Hicks


When we get together

we give it up to the drummer

between silences

stroke the mighty bass with our toes

our nipples




headboard a sweeping piano

we strum the hell out of guitars with elbows composed of love songs

lips double-dipped honey blows the flute

our band plays regularly in the middle of the night

we don’t care who hears the music

–By Margie Shaheed

© 2017 by Margie Shaheed


Love Poem #135

from our bed I watch you rub

peanut oil on your naked brown body

toasted from a hot shower

you tell me the scientist

George Washington Carver

used peanut oil to massage the limbs

of polio patients to help rebuild muscle

I tuck this fact away under the edges of my afro

cuz right now I barely hear you

my temperature’s rising like mercury in August

–By Margie Shaheed

© 2017 by Margie Shaheed