Serenity Sunday: Where I Come From


I am my father’s name and I come from dirt roads, rich soil, Chatawa wells, and firebombed back doors. I come from acts of resistance and freedom marches. I come from a people who didn’t migrate from Mississippi to Harlem or Chicago in the 1920’s. Out of the marshy waters of Dunbar Creek where I stood up in the belly of a whale until he spit me out in the Tallahatchie River. And a mother could no longer cradle her son. (Emmett Till, Money, Mississippi, 1955.)


I come from the “bomb capital of the world, 1964”. I come ruggedly, adorned in silk and in cotton, with scabs on my chocolate knees, caked with sand, bearing a poem in my soul.


I come humbly from tall porches in summer 1991, reaching into buckets of purple hull peas. I come from warm traditions like velvet cakes on Christmas and Grace before eating your meal. I come from lace, hats, and gloves on Easter. I come from lambent living rooms with tv popping on Thursdays and stereos playing vinyl after vinyl after Sam Cooke remastered on a Saturday night and Shirley Caesar on Sunday morning– heading to Antioch Missionary Baptist Church singing…

Oh Jesus
How I love 
Calling your name.

I come from They gets drown.

And Dar he.

I come from evergreen hills in Eastern Cape, South Africa, where they bury treasures…

I come from crowns and tribes, castles and ships…

Because everything works in circles.


Clinnesha is a writer, wife, mom, meta-artist, and social entrepreneur who feels most accountable to southern, black citizen-artists, elders, children, and families. Her work is at the intersection of arts, culture, innovation, and community.


2 thoughts on “Serenity Sunday: Where I Come From

  1. The more I read, the more I realized this was also my story. I could hear the bomb that hit the supermarket one block from my home. The house across the street from us was mistakenly bomb, they thought it was the home of the NAACP secretary; it was next door.

    This writer was definitely a Mississippi girl. As I viewed pictures of her early childhood, I Knew who she was, the grandchild of civil rights pioneers.

    Liked by 1 person

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