During her senior year at Syracuse University, Flose Boursiquot received a request from a member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority asking that she write a poem for a women’s empowerment event. Flose, who sometimes looks to other people’s experiences for inspiration, channeled Pakistani activism, Nobel Peace Prize winner, and gun-shot wound survivor, Malala Yousafzai.
Malala’s experience fighting for the education of girls gave rise to “March on Sister,” a poem found in Flose’s first collection of poetry, Close Your Eyes, Now Breathe.
When Flose wrote “March on Sister” about five years ago, she had no idea Malala would ever read the piece nor did she think she’d have the opportunity to be featured on the Assembly platform which gives voice to amazing girls and women who going against the grain for greater good.
“I’m most proud of saying no to fear really. In saying no to fear and just doing the things that I want to do, so much positive comes to fruition,” Flose tells Tess Thomas, the editor of Assembly.
Flose is thrilled to be associated with Malala because of her own personal passion for doing good and personal belief that educating girls brings humanity closer to justice.
Haitian-born poet, public speaker, and spoken-word artist Flose Boursiquot spoke at the Sun-Sentinel newspaper’s THRIVE event on Saturday, August 4th. The event took place at the W Hotel in Fort Lauderdale ahead of THRIVE’s wellness retreat scheduled to take place in October with a special appearance from Keynote Speakers, Bill & Giuliana Rancic.
Flose read select poems from both of her collections, Close Your Eyes, Now Breathe (2017) + loudmouth (2018). Among audience favorites, was a piece titled Mama’s Hands which detailed the relationship Flose has with her mother and the unique relationship both women have with hair.
Before sharing a piece written after Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist whose organization Flose is partnering with this fall, Flose took a survey of the room. “Raise your hand if you know who Malala is,” she asked the audience. Though most hands went up, there were a few who did not. Flose took the opportunity to detail Malala’s efforts in Pakistan before the Taliban shot her at age 15 and explained to the audience why the 21-year old Nobel Peace Prize winner is her role model. She then went on to perform March On Sister with gripping emotion.
To close out, Flose shared an empowering piece about uplifting women titled I am “Giant Woman.” from loudmouth, her second collection.
Flose credits her success to saying no to fear more than two years ago and making the decision to finally self-publish her first collection; something she wanted to do for more than five years.
My father grew up under a dictatorship in Haiti. By the time I was born in 1992, he was politically active and the Duvalier regime was dead but their legacy remained. I have memories of him hosting political meetings in our home in Jacmel and fighting for what is right. Yesterday, I stood with hundreds of people who are fighting to Keep Families Together and I told our story. We were lucky to achieve political asylum in 2000 but there are families that have escaped worse — murder, rape, trafficking — and they’re being denied entrance to the U.S. or they arrived and have been treated worse than human. Children as young as toddlers have been separated from their parents and this administration has taken on the viciousness of Andrew Jackson days. We, as citizens and people who know right from wrong, need to keep to the streets. Like John Lewis says, we have to cause some good trouble and demand humanity for every single person. Some things you can do: contact your senators, donate to Raices / ACLU, disseminate truthful information, vote in all elections especially midterms, watch the money (on Republican & Democratic sides), arm yourself with the ability to discern right from wrong, and ask political candidates the difficult questions. 🎥: Adian