The poeM

We Be The Light

Nina Brewton

Headshot of poet Nina Brewton

"Light warms...providing a safe space...Light exposes...blind spots and drives away shadows...Light into a brighter future…"

I am a writer who speaks and a speaker who sings. I have lived a life consumed by clouds of darkness and overcome that darkness to find the perfect peace, walking in the Light that was always there.
In all I do, I aspire to inspire others to not only acknowledge the peace, love and light are available to them but to walk in these three gifts, as they learn to become all that they were created to be.

"Light begets light and overcomes darkness effortlessly. I hope to always encourage others to  *BEAM* - BE inspired as I AM inspired."

As a sought-after speaker, Nina has found her story and personal triumphs as a beacon of light to motivate others. Nina currently resides in Chesapeake, Virginia with her husband, Raphael. She is available for new projects and collaborations.  Learn more at

America, You're Beautiful

America, you’re beautiful.

Your beauty the manifestation of the very best of everything that is within you

Your shores shimmering as gold refined
A glimmer of hope across waters
A glimpse of home in the distance
To those who have fought your battles
Stood their ground on your behalf
On soil that does not bear your name


These heroes proved
We prove our love in the ranks of your stripes
Our love made evident from our core

I affirm my love for you in my core values
Integrity first
Service before self
Excellence in all I’ve done for you

America, you’re beautiful.

You make it easy to love with your empty promises
Hearts set on the imagination of all that you are
All that we can be

My heart has swelled for you, America
Self-love nearly abandoned
Set aside in the name of unity and inclusion

Your comfort, my duty
Your freedom; not my freedom
It is not our freedom
My reality not yours
Yet you refuse to see

America, you’re beautiful.

Your allure pouring over praying hands with every sunrise
We give thanks for your daily bread
Grains golden, rich with life
Nurturing generations of  


The waves that carry dreams to your shores
Are waters of meditation
Flowing like the tears of dreamers
Each drop gathers as clouds in your spacious skies
Raining down on your majesties
Peaks purple like bruises in the hearts and on the backs of your countrymen

By Grace, you pour over us with your beauty
As your children pore over you
Your symbols of superiority
Lifted high upon your mountaintops
Honoring, always
America FIRST
Your eyes fixed on Your banner of war
In all her glory

Dignity, perverted
Saved for ghosts of those representing the worst of who you are
Romanticizing the sins of
Your Four Fathers and their brothers
These American idols
Casting their shadows down on the least of these
Their images carved into stone in the minds of your people

America, you’re beautiful

You are
The uncle no one speaks of
The abusive, violent, drunk uncle  
More than a mere black sheep
They say he’s the worst of our lineage
Tearing his own family apart
Battles with principalities fought at dinner tables

His hatred masquerading as pride and patriotism
Thanks given every time he leaves
Carrying his anger, regrets and greatest insecurities with him

Fear, hypocrisy and hatred
He holds close like the family Bible
Yielding to its every word
Holding it tightly, twine of discord
Sewing into the hearts of his own children
The tradition of abuse the family has long denied
Perverting their love calling it, pride

He’s taught them to see “others” as the enemy
A threat to their way of life
He fought on the frontline for freedom
Yet demonizes those who fight for their own

America, you’re proud of the seeds of your bloodline
Your children becoming
Teachers who teach half truths
Congressmen passing laws exploiting the oppressed
The great grandchildren of slave hands
Becoming those who swore to protect and serve

America, you’re so beautiful

But you can no longer afford to fall into the shadows
Of a past rooted in

You have violence sewn into
The very fabric of your being

This fabric the rope used to hang the sweetest of fruit from trees
It burns the hands of those refusing to release
Tugging, holding on to their allegiance
to the myth of Liberty and Justice for all

So, we fight
We stand in
Liberating strife
Infernos burning city to city
From the splendorous mountains and lush valleys of the land of gold
Eastward to the streets of the capital of the Confederacy
Northbound throughout the rotten apple illuminated by the light of Lady Liberty herself

We fight
We march
We pray

We lament for his...for your deliverance
So much beauty and potential
Worthy of love
The grace we’re all worthy of

Even I, stand enveloped in grace
Somewhere between the love of Christ
The words of Baldwin and
Paul’s letters to the Thessalonians

High atop Mercy’s billboard
We be the Light
Creating space for grace to abide
Yet exposing lies
The shadows in the corners of our minds

Light begets light
Illuminated by Love
Reflecting off of mirrors
Forcing our brothers and sisters to see themselves
As they are

We be the light
The light on a path forward
To the America of our best and brightest imaginations
Teaching our children to cease fleeing from reality
Showing them how to change it for the benefit of all lives…

Even if the reality is not yours


-Nina Brewton, 2020