Always A Gift

from by Micah Bournes

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lyrics

Frederick Douglass’s mother was a slave.
Frederick Douglass’s father was a slave master.
Frederick Douglass was a bastard,
a result of rape,
the embodiment of pain, shame, the
offspring of injustice,
a life that should have never existed
but I think it’s safe to say we are so
glad he did.

Frederick Douglass, was an orphan.
Frederick Douglass’s mother died when
he was a child.
Frederick Douglass was a
bastard-orphan-slave child
Frederick Douglass had a life that some might
say he’d be better without.
Frederick Douglass was a criminal.
A law breaker, a runaway slave self
educated orator, author,
international abolitionist, advisor to
the president,
appointed U.S. Marshal
and champion of women’s rights.

Frederick Douglass was the only Black
to attend
America’s first Women’s Rights Convention.
1848 Seneca Falls, I quote,

"In this denial
of the right to participate in government, not merely the degradation of woman
and the perpetuation of a great injustice happens, but the maiming and
repudiation of one-half of the moral and intellectual power of the government of the world.

Frederick Douglass loves you, baby
girl, young lady, sweet woman.
You’ve dreamed of being a mother, but
never thought it’d happen this way.
In a flood of passion you found
yourself clinging to a stranger,
and neither of you realized what he
left behind when the tide carried him off to sea.
You know exactly the type of things
people won’t say to your face and you feel like drowning in shame.

Or maybe you’re not one to get swept
away.
You didn’t need a ring, you had mutual
trust.
You didn’t need protection from what
you thought was love.
Not expecting the man who seemed
so committed to abandon the seed he worked so hard to plant. He insists you
exercise your right to choose, and by that, he means do what he wants you to.
In this twisted soap opera you’re faced with the choice to lose your lover or
lose his child, and right about now you feel like losing both.

Or maybe you’ve lost even more. Maybe
this life was forced inside you and some people still throw stones. They
call you murderer, for even considering, foolishly equating a homicidal maniac
with a victim of rape who might not want to raise the child of their oppressor.
I apologize for the ignorance. These predicaments are complex.

Your situation is less than ideal but
my
my sister, consider this,

Frederick Douglass’s mother was a
slave.
Frederick Douglass’s father was a slave
master.
Frederick Douglass was a bastard,
a result of rape,
the embodiment of pain, shame, the
offspring of injustice,
a life that should have never existed
but I think it’s safe to say we are so
glad he did.

Believe this,
nothing will be fixed by getting rid of
the only
joy in this brokenness.
The life inside of you is not yours to
live,
or take, or give,
but one to receive.
I pray you understand my friend,
life, is always, a gift.

credits

from Alive & Ill, released June 25, 2014
Sponsored by World Relief worldrelief.org
Recorded, Mixed and Mastered by E.M.J. of AlterBoy Productions alt-boy.com
Album artwork by Lindsey Taylor www.lindseydi.com

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Micah Bournes Long Beach, California

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