There is a club to which only the saddest mothers belong.


Most of its newer members are heavy laden with the fresh pain of a broken heart and blistering tears of frustration.

Its oldest members carry with them an unparalleled resolve and a righteous indignation, a gnawing ache wearing at their insides.


The members are mothers.

Mothers who have outlived daughters and sons and grandbabies.

Mothers who lost children to powers that be.

Powers that be abusive.

Powers that be steeped in tradition and unwritten law.

Powers filled with men who don’t care about mothers.


Some of these mothers will be sad forever, some have been exhausted by the system.

Some of them will fight on, and some of them won’t have the strength.


So who’s gonna fight for them?

Who’s gonna fight for their daughter’s daughters and for their son’s sons?

Who’s gonna make it stop?


Who heals the healers and keeps the keepers,

And who soldiers on when the soldiers are worn and weary?

Who shows them how to grieve, or how to breathe again?

Who washes the feet of those who march in the streets and stand at the caucuses?



Why, other mothers, of course.

Other healers. Other broken women.

They wash their own feet, and they hold each other’s hands.

Because only the members understand how dark such a loss can be.

and how loud the emptiness is,

how it rings in their ears only.

Maybe their hands tingle under the weight of lost time,

and maybe their legs shake with anxiety and restlessness.


So these mothers do the work. And these mothers carry each other.


And they carry their ghost children.


And they carry us.

Listen to Sandra Bland’s Mother from Josh Begley on Vimeo.