Location: Global Sightings by a D.C. lover: Location - Nigeria
Heidi Boas, a yoga teacher and a lawyer who recently spent six months in Senegal was moved by this recycled art at my “Poetry of Public Art” workshop on the Wellness and Healing Day organized by BloomBars.
The Weight of the World by Heidi Boas
I feel as if I am carrying the weight of the world on my head.
The burden compresses my spine as I smell the exhaust fumes of passing cars
and taste the grit and dust in my mouth.
I hold the sweaty hand of my child, crying inwardly that he must suffer as I do,
yet struggling to be strong for him. All of this is for him.
I dream of the day that he might escape from this world, lift the
overflowing basket off of his head and his head, and run to freedom -
to school, to a sustainable income,
to self-respect, to a real future.
Until that day comes, I will continue slowly and steadily
working, sweating under this enormous weight,
the weight of the world,
hoping to sell enough of this load to find a
way to freedom.
Earlier, Laura H Kwong, facilitator for my “Poetry of Public Art” class for Knowledge Commons DC selected the same photo to share this moving account:
Look at me by Laura Hwong
I see you passing by
with water on your head and a child on your back
weary from a long day of chores.
Do you see me?
Do wonder who fashioned bottle tops and candy wrappers into me?
Who turned refuse into beauty?
Do you taste the sweet syrup of soda?
candy melting on our tongue?
Do you hear us singing as we journey home?
Are you singing?
Do you feel the muscles in your forearms
and the plastic bag handles digging into your fleshy fingers?
Do you smell the diesel fumes of trucks passing by?
or do you smell the aroma of dinner,
Dinner, that another mother has already prepared,
to care for her family, nourish their bodies
Hold our families, our communities, together.
Carry on, Mother, with strength, purpose, and joy.