Sunday, October 24, 2010

Those Who Are Without...

So, this Parent's Day at Sem got me thinking. So many students got the chance to bring their parents to class, but me, I didn't have that chance. With so many others things that my mom has going on at home, she didn't get a chance to come visit me. It is sometimes so difficult to watch my friends with their grandparents, parents, siblings, etc. This made me wonder: how do people deal with not having their parents at all? It is easier for me because when I think about it, I know that my mom is still here.

Etheridge Knight, a famous poet from the mid 20th century, was once married to Sonia Sanchez, another famous poet. Sonia Sanchez, born Wilsonia Benita Driver, lost her mother during childbirth one year after she was born. After losing her mother, Sanchez was sent to live with her grandmother and other relatives for several years. After that, her and her sister were sent to live with their father and his third wife in Harlem.

"The death of her grandmother, the only mother she had ever know, motivated Sanchez to write her first poem at age six." Her father, Wilson L. Driver, was a drummer in a jazz band and did not have as much time to care for her as he would have liked, so moving in with him and his third wife was not a particularly easy transition.

She graduated from Hunter College in 1955 with a BA in political science and later became involved in the Civil Rights Movement and CORE. Throughout the Black Arts Movement, Sanchez became involved with other great poets like Amiri Baraka, Haki Madhubuti and Larry Neal. Sonia Sanchez is known for her prolific writing about the struggles between whites and blacks, men and women and cultures. After Amiri Baraka published her poetry in a French literary magazine, she began to consider herself a poet. Between 1967 and 1977, Sanchez taught at many universities including San Francisco University, Temple, Rutgers and many more. Sanchez was also a playwright and has lectured at over 500 universities and colleges.

Sanchez received the 1999 Langston Hughes Poetry Award and also is the 2001 Poetry Society of America's Robert Frost Medalist."She has not only been a strong voice for social justive, but has also helped others to find their own voice. Today, Sanchez has three children of her own: Morani, Mungu and Anita Sanchez. She is a truly successful woman and I admire he for her dedication. I cannot imagine what it would be like without my mother when I was younger, but even through all the turmoil, she became a very talented woman.

Quotes and some extra information from: