Welcome to Sunday Morning Lyricality, featuring a weekly song or poem by a Minnesota writer. Our current guest editor is Anisa Hagi-Mohamed.

Before we get to her poet choice, we should note Anisa’s talent in graphics. Anisa designed Lyricality’s website banner, the new Sunday Morning Lyricality image and all our images on LyricaliTea. Anisa’s artwork is beautifully bright and colorful and full of shapes that really draw in attention, just checkout LyricaliTea.

But, first the poetry.

For this Sunday poem Anisa says this about Khadijo (JoJo) Abdi:

We have another gem from Khadijo (JoJo) Abdi this week. Her last poem, on Sept. 5th Sunday Morning’s with Lyricality, was about overcoming imposter syndrome ties into this next piece about replacing damaging negative self-talk and narratives forced onto us by others and transforming them into beautiful gardens

The Gardener
By Khadijo (JoJo) Abdi

Words that cannot be unsaid took root in my mind
Seeped in before I could format ideas of who I am

So now,  who I am are these transplanted seeds of poisonous careless words,
That grew too big, crowding, overcrowding, and smothering
The beauty I tried to grow in its place

The bad seeds had a head start on the season
Planted early, they dug deep roots in the psyche 

Though they have a season when they are dormant
They are perennials that pop up year after year.

When the positive thoughts I tried to plant are like summer flowers,
Cheerful and gone too soon.

My turn to sow the seeds is now,
To choose carefully what goes in the garden,
and what to yank out by the root.

I’ll replace it with a nursery of tenderness,
Put up a trellis where hope climbs.
Water with mercy and affirm it
by dousing with a healthy helping of enoughness.

Tend to it with kindness toward oneself,
in those moments
When I am down and wilted.

I am the gardener of what flourishes in my mind
I will grow grittiness, even if starting with a seed today, 
there will be a season when it will be
Strong as an oak tree.


Khadijo can be reached at: Khadijo.ab@gmail.com