17 & 18 DFABW – Upstanders and YES

To Tammy
You were an upstander for Doris
I was the one you stood up to
I was embarrassed, but my proud
and ragged heart became better that day,
thanks to you
To Dr. C
You were the epitome of a commanding school leader
Physically strong and tall, with
wisdom to match. In our largely white population,
I loved what my children learned about
a powerful black man who led their school.
I was a stay at home mom and substitute teacher
at your school.
One day something happened and you were my greatest
upstander. I needed your support, and you were there
with all your power standing up for me. Thank you.

YES to upstanding! During each day in the months of August and September, I am responding to a different word from Dictionary for a Better World: Poems, Quotes, and Anecdotes from A to Z by Irene Latham and Charles Waters, illustrated by Mehrdokht Amini.  Yesterday’s word was Upstander. Today’s word is YES. A small group of people wanting to make the world a better place are reading and responding together. Join us! Visit Common Threads: Patchwork Prose and Verse by Kim Haynes Johnson for more information. Here is the word list I’ll be following for August and September.

One thought on “17 & 18 DFABW – Upstanders and YES

  1. Denise, your apostrophes are so compelling here, being the upstood and writing to an upstander who stood up for you. Your use of the word ragged heart to describe how you felt embarrassment, but then being a better person after some correction, is raw. I was cheering for you in part 1 and in part 2. I read a post from a friend in Florida who was in Lowe’s to buy a new refrigerator, and the woman in front of him went off on a new cashier in a short-staffed store. He stood up for the cashier and the lady took her business elsewhere. But it made him feel great to reassure someone willing to work when others are not working that she was doing a great job! Sometimes that’s what it takes. Thanks for sharing today!

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