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"Diaspora" - (The poetic inspiration behind the Majestic Melanin Magic Body Butter)

Updated: Oct 24, 2020

We are NOT the same.

I do not know you, you majestic, melanin being.

But I recognize the familial relations

Etched onto your skin

That links us as brethren;

The way our shared likeness exists in

the myriad of sun kissed, earth tone patterns,

reflected in your coloring,

I see myself in you.

Como tu hermana, tu familia;

sisters and brothers in el mismo struggle,

somos ébano!

A spectrum of tropical exotic hues mixed with

a bold black resistance:

somos negro, zambo y pardo.

Our beautiful blackness persists

despite denials of its existence

so, sí I speak Spanish,

pero soy africana también.

Never forget that nuestra raza is

an important mix of El Yanga,

y los Garifunas;

de son a salsa,

reggaeton y bachata,

the ancient echoes of a distant motherland resonates in our pulse,

beating a song that unites our corazóns in psychic kinship forever.

Somos proud to be who we are!

But we are not the same.

I and I overstand

Millennial migrations may have separated us but still we are connected

Out of many, one people

is we culture.

So,when we meet

every ting be irie

caw mi aredi feel unno fi apart of we

ah so dat mi seh:

one love, one heart, one race.

There is a collective joy that binds us across time and space

Because fun, festive bacchanals trigger historical traditions

my subconscious instinctively remembers;

and the saga of a rich but sacrificial past embedded in strange dialects

strengthens the sacred bond we already possess,

so thus:

mwen chanje ou

I missed you before I even knew you,

Ak sak pase!

(Nap boule!)

I hear my spirit in your voice:




and Marley.

The cadence of disparate accents reflect the surviving wisdom

derived from a continent that breathes life into us.

The continent that birthed us all -

Nous sommes africains

Nòs somos negros

Nou se moun nwa


African Americans


Majestic, melanin beings -

No, we are not the same

and yet we are one.

We harvest a colossal power of greatness

imprinted within our pigment like badges of ornament,

Africa lives inside, on and through us.

So my sister, my brother I may not know you

but I recognize and undeniably love your spirit.

Stand tall in who you are,

you beautiful, beautiful African!



Jaiye Empress

29 January 2016


Watch a performance of this poem here.

*This piece is the poetic inspiration behind the Majestic Melanin Magic Body Butters.

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