My Mother’s Greens — A Foodways Poem by Christopher D. Sims

Christopher D. Sims
2 min readNov 23, 2022


My mother’s greens
are soulful songs,
sonnets, a promise
to future generations
who need nutrition,
nurturing, listening,

My mother’s greens
have raised generations;
have impacted lonely lives
who did not have food
or love to go home to.

My mother’s greens
are a guitar strum,
a sad man’s hum,
African drums
thumping, pumping,

My mother’s greens
are magical. The voodoo
in her fingers are from
Bluff City Arkansas where
images and stories of my

are threaded into
our conversations
after dinnertime.

My mother’s greens are
grooves, electric, symphonic,
bionic — a tonic for healing.

When she cooks them she’s
revealing the Black excellence
of Black cooking.

My mother’s greens is
Black love, is Black genius,
is a Black phenomenon, is
Black strength, emotion,
drive, dedication, commitment,

is of the Mother continent,
is savvy, is beautiful, is beyond
what you find in easily digestible
American cookbooks that lack
a people’s story.

My mother’s greens has
welcomed nephews home
from jail and prison sentences;
welcomed back home family
who left for other cities, opportunities;

welcomed back kin

who are estranged
Illinoisans who haven’t

lived in Rockford
for years.

My mother’s greens greeted me

after basketball practice and football

games, welcomed me home when

my twin and I had long nights hanging

with friends, my mother’s greens are

the essence of us Sims.

My mother’s greens raised me,
gave me all of what I have needed
to become me, to be me. To be me.

And for her greens, and for what
she means to me, I am so grateful.



Christopher D. Sims

Writer, performance artist, and activist who writes about racism, anti-Blackness, and human rights struggles. A voice for truth and righteousness.