An Elegy for Murdered Black Women

A poem in response to a recent article in The Guardian that highlighted the fact that at least four Black women were killed everyday in 2020.

“There’s never been a moment in our society where there’s been a reckoning with the particular kinds of violence that’s meted out against Black women.” - Kimberlé Crenshaw; from The Guardian article “At least four Black women and girls were murdered per day in the US last year

The data says
more Black women died violently in 2020
then in recent years
which is to say…
when most of the world was in isolation
murder was still pushy about
keeping Black women company

By the time fall foliage covered grave markers last autumn
over 1,000 Black mothers & aunts & sisters & nieces
were dressed in their Sunday’s best for burial
some, the casualties of unintended bullets
several, the victim of a lover’s scorn
the death knell, per usual, ringing too softly
to siren, an amber alert

There is, so much focus on
keeping the Black boy/man away from
being snared by the web of homicide
that when the Black girl/woman
goes ghost by way of the gun
or bludgeoning at the hands of the undomesticated
everyone’s voice is too soar to scream
on her behalf

we’ve grown so accustomed to feminine energy
being the sacrifice if it means
our sons could survive one more day
maybe, we keep confusing the blood on
our sons’ shirts as their own blood and not
the rouge they drew from our daughters

Or maybe…
our baby girls
are not the apples of our eyes
we claim them to be
maybe, we keep ignoring their rot
because we’ve always chosen
to prioritize Adam
no matter how many times
Eve has also been victimized by
this serpent-earth, hell-bent on


Donney Rose is a Writer, Educator, Organizer and Chief Content Editor at The North Star