Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Family Tree

My family tree always bothered me
On one side there's doctors and lawyers
While the other side just gets poorer and poorer

I think the difference can be identified by the words
We heard when we were children

One day you will go to college
and increase knowledge
And they did

Get a job and give your money to me or get out
was our bid
I think we were just an added responsibility

While on the other side of the family tree
they were taught to achieve and strive
For a better life

We were taught to settle,
just survive
Maybe become some man's wife

How can one turn this kind of fate around?
It takes courage
Courage to break the family curse of poverty
Courage to face the challenge of adversity
and fight the odds

Courage to go to college
And study hard
Courage to fall down and get back up again
Courage to fail, but fight till you win

Courage to take a minimum wage job with the plan in mind
To tap into your highest potential and one day leave all this behind

When I look at my family tree
Sometimes I get angry
I see success in our DNA
Seems like on my side of the family
there's a slight delay

Delayed but not denied
I heard the preacher say
Wonder why God chose to do it this way?

I refuse to be identified by my family tree
There is a good life prepared for me
It is my manifest destiny

It has cost me some blood, sweat and tears
And forced me to face all of my fears
I even made a deliberate choice
to say to my children
listen to that inner voice
Telling you to be different
creative, hard working and smart
So that one day your children can have a better start
in this life
and not just settle for being some man's wife

Told my kids that they can change the family tree
And rise up
Change the world
Teach, preach
Become a poet
Write a book, write a play
Just do it!

So that when they look at their family tree
They can say
Generational blessings follow my family

We are the head and not the tail
above and not beneath
World shakers, History makers,
trail blazers,
More than conquerors
Not scared of a fight
Blessed going out
and blessed coming in!
Because we learned
With God's grace and mercy
We win!