Dear Audre Lorde – The Feminist Wire

Dear Audre Lorde




Image Credit: Dagmar Shultz

Image Credit: © Dagmar Shultz

Dear Audre Lorde,

I thank you for the poem that you were and the poem that you are. You are the poem that I cling to at night when I’m afraid. You are my symbol of survival. I never had the chance to meet you in the flesh. My relationship with you is a ghostly matter. I found you in my dark hour, the sun was sharp in Southern California, but I felt cold. I felt a numbness and I was floundering. I reached for something, and your litany came for me, came to me, whispered in my ear, “survive!” You pushed me and contiune to push me to find the words when silence is all that I can see. Because you taught me better, I know that it is better to speak. You have given me scriptures, holy Black feminist verses. A book of Black magic is Black love and ALL THAT is beautiful. I learned from you to seek the Black Feminist divine behind my own I/eyes.  I offer to you, my Aquarian ancestor, in celebration and remembrance of the life you lead and the legacy you left behind, a dozen haikus:


Audre Lorde gave us

Tools for survival. Poems

be liberation.


Tools for survival:

Wrap yourself in poetry

And dance. And love. Move.

Silence will fill us

With emptiness, not safety

Break down, break open.

A litany for

Black skin, white America

Repurpose the tools.

The master’s tools will

No longer have meaning when

New world (re)ordered.

Audre Lorde gave us

Black knowledge is a resource

Learn how to be there.


Tools for survival:

Anger is useful at times

Feel when and know how.

Silence will kill us

If we let it go unsaid

I want us to live.

A litany for

Black feminist love and life

Gave us anchor, home.

The master’s tools will

Destroy Black radical dreams

If we don’t object.

Audre Lorde gave us

Courage to fight. Keep writing.

Affirm, yes to you.


Audre Lorde gave Black

Vision a feminist route

Seek to know the trace.


<3Kai M. Green