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  • Writer's pictureCharmaine Davis

Read the poem "deep roots" byayodole nzinga,Oakland's Poet Laureate

‘deep roots’ is a poem illustrating the connection within Oakland and the power of centering community and being deeply rooted. Deeply Rooted Collaborative partners have served Oakland for decades and are working to ensure that the Oakland General Plan 2045 integrates the deep roots of Oakland residents. ayodele nzinga is Oakland’s Poet Laureate and a part of the Black Arts Movement Business District, CDC, a Deeply Rooted Collaborative partner.

deeply rooted in the soil

deeply rooted in the town

deeply rooted in oakland

deeply rooted

layers of a story

gathered here

from there

to root here

in remembrance of

places

we intersected

& rose higher

than

“small talk” about us

honoring

tales of tulle reeds

water intersections

dislocated discourses

intersected by

exclusion redlines

layers of a story

steeped & brewed

over time

deeply rooted in the soil

deeply rooted in the town

deeply rooted in oakland

deeply rooted

a symphony of

collard greens red beans

bus & train rides

railroad ties

intersections

& iron will

spirit

refuses to drown

dances forward

lionhearted

to the sound of drums

as we write

here

here

together

the story of

the path

to here

together dreaming

whole tomorrows

for all of us

here

here

intersecting

layers of a story

blended & brewed over time

deeply rooted in the soil

deeply rooted in the town

deeply rooted in oakland

deeply rooted

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