By Patrice Juah
For so long, we were torn apart
Our voices were buried in the cold dark earth,
Our songs were cries and our rain, tears.
We were silenced and banned from speaking our truths.
Hate towards each other burdened us,
as fear crippled us.
We were blinded by lies that tore our efforts into shreds.
We would form “Pity Parties”,
wallow in sorrow and rejoice over each other’s downfall.
Our hope was lost and our courage killed.
In all this misery, something happened;
on that fateful day, the scales fell from our eyes
and we could suddenly see the strength that sisterhood brings.
The chains were set loose and left our hands free,
free to unite and embrace one another.
Consumed by love we cried, but tears of joy this time.
Swept by the wind of change, we did not remain the same.
We began a new journey together and have stood strong in spite of our differences.
We’ve cherished our uniqueness and dispelled the “myth” that we are weak.
Celebrate women, celebrate!
Celebrate how far we’ve come, and how much further we must go.
Celebrate the resurrection of our voices to speak for the voiceless.
Celebrate ruling nations and touching lives.
Celebrate being mothers, daughters, sisters, wives, presidents, bosses and role models – all in one dress.
Celebrate being heroines in the fight to end injustice and violence against women.
Give a smile in place of a frown,
Dance to the rhythm of the peace you’ve helped to build.
Pat yourselves on the back for a race perfectly run.
“W” marks the beginning of the word “World”;
Women make the world,
celebrate, women, celebrate!
Patrice Juah is a 2014 Mandela Washington Fellow, Poet, Fashion Entrepreneur, Girls Education Advocate and Former Miss Liberia, dedicated to changing Liberia’s image within the international community. She uses her writing to inspire women, highlight their struggles, and celebrate their triumphs. She is a member of the Liberia Association of Writers.