Word to Mother
Warmhearted and young, armed and dangerous, I was moving my guns and weapons out of my Brooklyn apartment to one of my most reliable stash spots. As heavy as they were, my thoughts were heavier and even more deadly. I was trying to move murder off my mind.
Kidnapping is a bullshit English word. It doesn't convey the insult that the offense carries, when a man invades another man's home, fucks with his family or his wife, la kadar Allah (God forbid), and steals her away.
The man whose wife is gone stands there try'na push the puzzle pieces together of where his wife is exactly and what happened exactly. His blood begins to boil, thicken, curdle, and even starts to choke him. That's why for me, kidnapping and murder go hand in hand.
In my case, my young wife Akemi's kidnapper is her own father, her closest blood relation, a man who she loves and honors. For me to kill him would be to lose her even if I win her back. And I refuse to lose.
Ekhtetaf is our word for kidnapping. My Umma pushed it out from her pretty lips. She pulled it from her soul and gave it the true feeling that it carried for us—the hurt, shame, violation, and insult. For half a day it was all that she said after I relayed to her that Akemi was gone. My new wife had been taken against her will back to Japan without a chance to express herself to us, her new family, face to face.
For me to see my mother Umma's Sudanese eyes filled with tears tripled my trauma. I had dedicated my young life to keeping the water out of my mother's eyes and returning a measure of joy to her heart that life had somehow stolen. But Sunday night, when our home phone finally rang, and Umma answered only to hear the silence of Akemi's voice and the gasp in Akemi's breathing and the restraint in Akemi's crying, Umma's tears did fall.
There was a furious rainstorm that same Sunday. Everything was soaked, the afternoon sky had blackened and then bled at sunset. So did Umma's eyes switch from sunlight to sadness to rain and eventually redness.
Through the evening thunder I sat still trying to simmer. They say there is a beast within every man, and I was taming my beast with music. My earplugs were siphoning the sounds of Art of Noise, a soothing song called "Moments of Love."
My sister Naja held her head low. She was responding to our mother Umma's feelings. Like the eight-year-old that she is, she did not grasp the seriousness of Akemi's disappearance and believed more than Umma and I that Akemi would be coming through the door at any moment.
* * *
Much later that same Sunday night, family day for us, my Umma placed a purple candle in a maroon dish and onto her bedroom floor. She struck a black-tipped match and it blazed up blue. The subtle scent of lavender released into her air.
MIDNIGHT AND THE MEANING OF LOVE by Sister Souljah. Copyright © 2011 by Sister Souljah. Reprinted by permission of Gallery Books, a Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., NY.
The incomparable Sister Souljah brings her magic back to the page with a new tale featuring a formidable character we already know and love so well in Midnight and the Meaning of Love.
The now-teenaged Midnight’s beloved wife, Akemi, has been kidnapped from their Brooklyn apartment—and by her own father. No one in the family, not his mother, Umma, or his young sister, Naja, wants to face the horrible truth of where she might be and what may have happened to her. Only Midnight. In his home country, the Sudan kidnapping of women was common. But not in America. Midnight’s not about to let go of his beautiful, beloved mate without a fight; and he’s prepared to travel the world to find her, if that’s what it takes. Except when he does finally find his precious Akemi, that’s when the real drama begins....
Warmhearted, conscientious, brave and handsome, Midnight, now empowered by his father’s strong spirit, grips us once again as he maneuvers his way into manhood without excuses, fighting for his life and the woman he loves as he scans the globe to bring her back home, and leaving tracks in every reader’s heart. Prepare to fall in love with Midnight all over again in this unforgettable new novel.
Hardcover Book : 400 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster ( April 12, 2011 )
Item #: 13-378220
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 1.0inches
Product Weight: 28.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
I read Coldest and Midnight first. I loved this one as well. It's not your typical urban story. I actually learned something!! I did sense another book coming after this when. *Fingers crossed*
Reviewer: Mary E
Coming from an Islamic background, I am loving this book, I am not finished at the moment, but I can't put it down. I have read CWE at 16, Midnight at 31 and now this one at 33. Sister Souljah has not let me down. All you must go to her site first to understand the meaning behind the Midnight books. She has put alot into his character, as well as this book, she has lived in Japan to get the full affect of living the culture. Please read the first Midnight and then this one.
SS you have done it again.
I read this book and LOVED IT. I read the first one as well and LOVED IT. It’s not the usual urban books filled with sex, drugs, and crime; even though I will occasionally read those too...LOL! It’s an actual story with an actual meaning. I loved the storyline. I loved the time, heart, and soul that she put into the detail of this book. This book moved me when I read it and I LOVED it so much I read it TWICE!!!!! This book is now one of my favorite books out of the entire books i have read!!!!!!!! It’s very different from the average urban book and I would definitely recommend this book if you are looking for a relaxing and amazing read!!
Reviewer: Whit w
Borrow it from the library, very disappointed.
Reviewer: Deborah S
I read TCWE and Midnight as well and loved both books. They are different, but had most people (true fans of Sister) read her website or articles she published, she let us know that Midnight was NOT a sequal to TCWE nor was she planning on writing one. Cant wait until my book comes... :)
Reviewer: Tasha W