Choices by Nikki Giovanni

Nikki Giovanni has been one of my most favoritest poets ever since I discovered books of poetry. When I started to read her poems, I took great heart that a nice Italian girl could write poetry like that. It gave me hope that maybe this Polish girl might could give it a try too. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that that nice Italian girl describes herself as “a Black American, a daughter, a mother, a professor of English.”  Ah well,  so much for my silly assumption based on how a name appears to me. Naming is powerful. Words are powerful. When we learn to use words, we are learning to develop our power, we are building choices for ourselves. So, check it out … Choices by Nikki Giovanni …



if i can’t do
what i want to do
then my job is to not
do what i don’t want
to do

it’s not the same thing
but it’s the best i can

if i can’t have
what i want    then
my job is to want
what i’ve got
and be satisfied
that at least there
is something more
to want

since i can’t go
where i need
to go    then i must    go
where the signs point
though always understanding
parallel movement
isn’t lateral

when i can’t express
what i really feel
i practice feeling
what i can express
and none of it is equal
i know
but that’s why mankind
alone among the animals
learns to cry
—Nikki Giovanni

If you like this, check out these links to learn more and read more by Nikki Giovanni

We all have to make choices in our lives. For sure not all of the choices are what we might have most wanted. Sometimes we find ourselves between a rock and a hard place. Sometimes we must discern between the lesser of two evils. But, choose we must. Let us always find a way to choose the path with heart. We can always find a way to imbue the path with heart, to love the one you’re with!

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