Background Image (via yuliiamazurkevych on Canva): An abstract pastel watercolour painting of leaves. Foreground Text: Words of Wellness.
Advocacy & News, Awareness & Unlearning

Black History Month: Words of Wellness

The theme of Black History Month in the U.S. this year focuses on ‘health and wellness’; a chance to celebrate and educate about the sacrifices, innovations and contributions of those who have made a difference in all our lives. This includes the writers, poets and storytellers who share their words of truth, guidance and love with the world.

We can all learn from each other, even finding the words composed by someone else speaks directly to our own needs; a balm to the soul. There are so many resilient and powerful writers; revealing that taking care of our well-being is connected to much more than we may realize.

The following six quotes are from Black women who move mountains with their words; imparting knowledge and experience that we can all benefit from.

Background image (via yuliiamazurkevych on Canva) is an abstract pastel watercolour painting of leaves. Foreground text reads, “Black History Month: Words of Wellness” (a blog post on Transatlantic Notes).

Nayyirah Waheed

A self-described “quiet poet” and author who has written two poetry collections; ‘Salt’ (2013) and ‘Nejma’ (2014); that tackle racial identity, love and feminism.

Nayyirah Waheed poem that reads, “Be easy. Take your time. You are coming home. To yourself.”
words by Nayyirah Waheed & art by Molly/Transatlantic Notes

Lalah Delia

A wellness educator, spiritual practitioner and writer who authored ‘Vibrate Higher Daily: Live Your Power’ (2019); a spirituality-guided self-help book.

Lelah Delia quote that reads, " Your boundaries attract the right type of energy."
words & art by Lalah Delia

Cleo Wade

An artist, poet, author, speaker and activist who has written four books (thus far) with the first being ‘Heart Talk: Poetic Wisdom for a Better Life’ (2018); a poetry collection of affirmations and inspiration.

Cleo Wade poem that reads, "Falling down does not make us who we are. Standing up does. Rising and continuing to move forward does."
words & art by Cleo Wade

Audre Lorde

A prolific writer, feminist, civil rights activist and self-proclaimed “black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet”; author of ‘Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches’ (1984) and many other seminal works.

Audio Lorde quote that reads, “Nothing I accept about myself can be used against me to diminish me.”
words by Audre Lorde & art by Molly/Transatlantic Notes

Morgan Harper Nichols

A writer, musician, songwriter, mixed-media artist and poet who has authored ‘Peace is a Practice’ (released February 15th 2022); an encouraging guide to find peace and purpose.

Morgan Harper Nichols quote that reads, “You don’t have to arrive at a picture-perfect life before you can know peace. The river is here for you now.”
words & art by Morgan Harper Nichols

Alex Elle

A writer, breathwork coach and author of a number of poetry books, guided journals and essays focused on community building and self-care practices that lead to healing and mindfulness. Her latest publication, ‘How We Heal’ will be coming out later this year.

Alex Elle quote that reads, "If it is costing you your peace, put it down. If it is robbing you of joy, leave it alone. If it is disrupting the flow of ease in your life, let it go. No more settling because you think you have to -- you don't."
words & art by Alex Elle

When we discover some writing that resonates with us, it can often articulate what we’re experiencing; helping to navigate delicate moments or times of struggle. What we connect with opens us up to the work needed to grow; support, inspiration, motivation and self-discovery can be a page turn or a paragraph away.

Which authors, poets and writers are you celebrating this Black History Month? Do you have any books/works you’d recommend?


Further Reading:

Books By Black Authors We Can’t Wait To Read In 2022 – Book-Ish (Refinery29)

Black History Month 2022: A TFC Reading List – The Century Foundation

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36 thoughts on “Black History Month: Words of Wellness”

  1. The weird side of internet – I have seen some of them before, not knowing who said those and being too lazy to find out. I really like Alex quote and I have been trying to implement this to myself, harder than I thought. My new favorites will become Nayyirah and Audre. I am in process of changing my life and those will be perfect “pep talks” for myself when things get though,

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  2. These are all new to me writers, but each of these poems speak to me. I will be searching for more of their work. Thanks for sharing Molly.

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  3. These are such great quotes! The one by Audre Lorde especially resonates with me.

    I wasn’t intentionally reading this for Black History Month, but did just recently finish “What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing” by Oprah and Dr Perry. It is a fantastic book on trauma that I’d recommend to everyone to read.

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