Black & Kinky Amongst Brown Waves


poem of the week: why I commemorate World AIDS Day
December 15, 2013, 1:37 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

December 1st of every year, since 1988, is World AIDS Day and AIDS.gov set this year’s theme as “Shared Responsibility: Strengthening Results for an AIDS-Free Generation.” The World Health Organization (WHO) continues to organize communities globally under the theme of “Getting to Zero: Zero new HIV infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS-related deaths.”

World AIDS Day was first conceived in August 1987 by James W. Bunn and Thomas Netter, two public information officers for the Global Programme on AIDS at the WHO in Geneva, Switzerland. The WHO reports that there were 35.3 million people living with HIV in 2012 and of those people, 2.1 million were adolescents. I work in the arena of sexual health and wellness with adolescents on a daily basis. This piece may expand into something longer, but it is ‘finished’ for now.

 

why I commemorate World AIDS Day
© 2013 by margaux delotte-bennett

infected and affected are
intimately linked
both are plagued by
dis-ease

no ease of movement in a world full of stigma
no ease of mind in a body under attack
no ease of time because the years keep passing by
without a cure
without a suspension of new infections
without an operational policy
to make an AIDS Free generation
a reality
in my lifetime

because in my lifetime I have lost
a refugee friend
a school administrator
a religious leader
a media idol
a musical muse

because in my lifetime I have friends
who are enduring boldly
speaking frankly
living positive-ly
because though they know they are strong
even they wish they did not have to prove their strength
to themselves
to society
in this way
every
day

because in my lifetime
the infected and affected
have come to the table
have entered the fray
and the AIDS epidemic continues to grow
and claim our warriors and our companions

each year I need to remember
that to continue to struggle
means we are one day closer
to a world where dis-ease is not synonymous with shame
and yet another day closer
to a cure

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