First, we were dismissed,
written out of the history books.
Years of dismissal,
but we persisted with grace,
continuing to tell our stories.

Documenting accomplishments,
never losing sight of
who we were,
where we came from
and what we accomplished.

We protected our legacy,
our history,
understanding we could not
stand still.
Legacy exists
because of the spirit
of a people.

We are our legacy.
We are our past,
present and future.
We become the force
that births each generation,
keeping the promise to God
to make history
and to be.



Janet Cormier is a painter, writes prose and poetry, and performs comedy. JC prefers different and original over pretty. She loves collecting stuff, but cleaning not so much. Janet also talks to strangers. A lot. Her column now appears weekly on Oddball Magazine.

“We Are Here” is also the title of Janet’s art exhibit celebrating Black History Month. It is currently on display at the Connololy Library located on 433 Centre Street in Jamaica Plain.