Monday, November 27, 2006


“Welcome, baby!” Phillis Wheatley exclaims as Dorothy West wraps her in a warm embrace.

“There is a seat for you here,” Lorraine Hansberry calls out from the table where they have all gathered, each holding court when it is her turn.

As Zora guides her to a cushioned throne between Audre and Octavia, she smiles her brilliant smile.

“Young, gifted, and black,” Lorraine chimes as she leans to pat the back of her hand gently.

“Joining us much too soon,” Ann Petry intones.

“Not for us to say,” Alice Dunbar-Nelson muses, sipping from a heavenly cup of tea.

“But it’s being said none the less,” says Audre.

“Where am I?” she asks, in awe of the mothers and daughters who had come before her.

They all smile. Zora chuckles softly. “In a room full of free women,” she answers.

“Where the beauty of your words will continue to light the stars of heaven,” Octavia adds.

“Heaven,” they all chime in unison.

“Won’t you share something you’ve written?” Ann asks. “I do believe it’s your turn.”

“And introduce yourself properly,” Phillis says sternly. “Let all the angels know who you are and what you do.”

She smiles again, as they each pull a book into their hands. “Thank you,” she says, as all eyes are upon her. “My name is Bebe Moore Campbell and I am a daughter, a mother, a wife, a friend and an author.”

“Young, gifted, and black,” choruses through the room.

“Joining us much too soon,” echoes off the walls.

“But here, in heaven, in a room full of free women,” she answers, “still sharing the beauty of my words.”

Bebe Moore Campbell
1950 - 2006


SS said...

Beautifully said. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Very nice.

Gwyneth Bolton said...

I have chills and I'm crying. Thank you. this was beautiful.

Poem Reader said...

SS here again (I hope this message doesn't duplicate--I think I messed up trying to post it a moment ago). Deborah, I've been thinking about your lovely post since yesterday. I liked it so much I've quoted it--please say you don't mind!-- on my own blog. Thank you again.

Deborah Mello said...

Thank you all, and no SS, I do not mind.

TDJ said...

What a beautiful tribute!

Anonymous said...

Yes What a beautiful post for a fine talented author who I will miss so so much. But as you say she is free. Topazzz