Listen to the poem
My Blackness is an intersection between Black Muslim and woman A triple threat of no regrets Nor will I forget the debt that my ancestors paid for me to be here I walk as a silhouette Some know me to be a duet so they call me the Melanin Hijabi My Blackness is not simply synonymous with struggle, racism and pain Because my Blackness is a dichotomy and honestly on the other side of that is love Breaking rules is my speciality And i'm so smooth the way I execute is never a criminality I know your thinking how my words flow so organically I attribute all greatness to Allah Ar-Raheem, Al-Quddus, Al-Muhaymin And sporadically he sprinkles some of his phonominality my way Someone once told me my Blackness carries a negative connotation A narrative that paints Black as having no time to love They said you are rebellious for doing so My Blackness replied If I’m a rebel than I’ll be the Malcom X to your Martin Luther King Because my Blackness shines so bright that it is lovable in fall, winter, summer, and spring And the love that I have for my Blackness ain't just a fling Baby this thing is everlasting So who are you to tell me I am unlovable
About the Poem
Uncovered is a poem about the reality of a Black Muslim woman. It uses Islam to speak to the horrific realities faced by Black Americans while not victimizing them but liberating them for their experience. The piece delves into the dichotomy that is the Black experience. The entire piece works to rewrite a narrative and humanize Black Muslim women while painting them as individuals who are not only able to love but are loveable. Even when that love is looked at as an act of rebellion.
Aneesah Lawrence is a freshman honors student at Howard University. She is a double major in Psychology and Criminology, a passionate activist, and a spoken word artist. Her poetry is an amalgamation of the Black experience, Islam, and personal narratives. Aneesah’s poems include Uncovered, Target Practice, and My Black Skin Says. She has performed her works at Howard University (Washington, DC), Sankofa Video Books & Café (Washington, DC), Art all Night 2022 (Washington, DC), and various open mics in her hometown, Jersey City, New Jersey.
Lawrence is the 2022 winner of Muslim Culture Con’s Open Mic held at the Muslim Journal’s “A Time To Be Grateful” annual fundraiser. Her career aspiration is to become a psychologist serving Black urban youth in juvenile correctional facilities and high-risk communities.
Lawrence serves as a first-year representative for Howard University’s Muslim Student Association. She is a member of the university’s Youth Justice Advocates. As an advocate, she is able to enter juvenile corrections facilities in D.C. and mentor Black youth.