“We will not vanish in the baited breath of our brothers. show me show me a man willing to fight beside me, my hand in his, the color of courage,” recites poet Aja Monet in a chilling piece giving voice to an overlooked issue.
The poem is in support of #SayHerName a movement raising awareness to police brutality against women of color. In the work, Monet recites the names of Rekia Boyd, Tanisha Anderson, Yvette Smith, Aiyana Jones, and other women who have been killed by police.
“It is us calling out the lack of attention on women of color also affected by state violence,” she said to the Huffington Post. “ We recognize the power of our voices and so we raise the spirits of our sisters by daring to utter their names.”
While #SayHerName is an extension of #BlackLivesMatter, it’s also a commentary on the forgotten faces of the ongoing movement. “I think #SayHerName is the surface level of the issues, but beneath that there is the real question of ‘Why?’ Why do I need to make saying her name a hashtag for you to pay attention? The goal is to use this as an opportunity to redirect the attention of people, to hopefully get folks researching the names and stories of all the women we’ve lost. To educate themselves so we are all more informed on how policing works. Black women’s bodies are the most policed bodies in this country.”
Watch Monet’s poem below.