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The Journey of Amina

Slavery

By Bright MurphyPublished about a month ago 3 min read

The Journey of Amina

Amina was born in a small village near the banks of the River Niger. Her people, the Mandinka, had lived in harmony with the land for generations. They were farmers and artisans, known for their rich culture and skilled craftsmanship. Amina, with her bright eyes and quick smile, was a beloved child in her community. She learned the traditions of her people from her elders and spent her days playing under the vast African sky.

Life was good, until the day the raiders came.

It was early morning when the village was attacked. Amina was gathering water from the river when she heard the screams. She dropped her clay pot and ran towards the village, but it was too late. The air was filled with smoke and the sound of clashing metal. Her village was under siege by a group of armed men, slavers seeking to capture and sell her people.

Amina was grabbed by a tall, scar-faced man. She struggled and screamed, but he was too strong. Bound and terrified, she was herded with other captives towards the coast, a journey that seemed endless. The hot sun beat down on them during the day, and at night they were huddled together, shackled and scared.

When they reached the coast, Amina saw something she had never imagined—a massive ship, bigger than any structure she had ever seen. It was the beginning of the Middle Passage, the harrowing voyage across the Atlantic Ocean. Crammed into the ship’s hold, Amina and the others were treated as cargo. The conditions were inhuman: the stench of sweat and waste was overwhelming, food was scarce, and disease spread rapidly.

Amina’s spirit, however, was not easily broken. She clung to memories of her family and her village, drawing strength from the stories her grandmother had told her. Stories of brave warriors and wise leaders, of gods and spirits who watched over their people. She shared these stories with the other captives, offering a flicker of hope in the darkness.

After what felt like an eternity, the ship reached the shores of the New World. Amina was sold to a plantation owner in the Caribbean. Life on the plantation was brutal. The work was backbreaking, and the overseers were cruel. Amina and her fellow slaves toiled from dawn until dusk, planting and harvesting sugarcane under the relentless sun.

Despite the hardships, Amina remained resilient. She formed bonds with other slaves, and together they created a support network. They sang songs that carried whispers of home, and they held secret gatherings where they practiced their traditions and rituals. These acts of resistance helped them retain their humanity in a world that sought to strip it away.

One night, Amina and a few others decided they could no longer endure the bondage. Inspired by tales of maroons—escaped slaves who had formed independent communities—they planned their escape. Under the cover of darkness, they fled the plantation, navigating through dense forests and treacherous terrain.

Their journey was perilous, but Amina led with determination. They followed the stars, guided by knowledge passed down through generations. After weeks of travel, they reached a maroon settlement hidden deep in the mountains. Here, they were welcomed as brothers and sisters.

In this new community, Amina found a semblance of freedom. The maroons lived self-sufficiently, growing their own food and defending their territory against incursions. Amina quickly became a respected member of the community, known for her courage and wisdom. She taught the children the stories of their ancestors, ensuring that the past was not forgotten.

Years passed, and Amina grew older. She saw the tides of change beginning to sweep across the Caribbean. The whispers of abolition grew louder, and eventually, slavery was abolished. Amina lived to see the day her people were declared free.

Her journey, marked by pain and resilience, was a testament to the enduring human spirit. Amina’s story was one of suffering, but also of survival and hope. She had been a slave, but she had never been defeated. Her legacy lived on in the hearts of those who remembered her—a beacon of strength for future generations.

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    BMWritten by Bright Murphy

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