Toneisha Black

My home with love 

Northeast · Hough · Poetry

CLE I say that city proud
Forever my home since ’97
Who knew I was born in the best city
No boasting just toasting
To a home that’s just over near Hough
Growing up and feeling like I’m in a mystical place
Imperfectly perfect I would call it
Protected in a generational three-story home
On a little street called Holyrood
Where growing up I made friends that
In turn created memories
Playing in the big huge field across the street
Enjoying the company of the elders watching over
It’s here where I experience my first blackout in ’03
Hot and only small
Scared and not knowing
While the candles flicker
And the real heat outside had temperatures rising
Oh and minds going crazy
But what was fun was school
John W. Raper
I met my real best friend
I met a sister
I met wonderful teachers
Cleveland in my eyes
A very big treasure
Talent and really bright
Jamming out to the block parties every summer
Can’t forget the huge Hough Parade
In the dead heat of summer playing around or handling my business on the Daughters of the Nile
Proudly stomping my feet and yelling to the beat
Now I may have moved on
But not too far away
From the place that’s shaped me
From the beautiful history it brings
Even though some things crashed and burned
Its memory is imprinted
The revision for the better
Cleveland my dear city
On that little street I told you guys about
In that three-story home filled with memories
That’s where I am from

Toneisha Black

Toneisha Black is a twenty-three-year-old nursing student. She was born in Mt Sinai Hospital four months early and remembers her mom and cousin telling her how small she was. She was raised near Hough on a street called Holyrood and lived there until she was twelve. She lived for the block parties as kid and loved seeing her neighborhood coming together.


Neighborhood Voices is a city-wide creative writing project designed by Literary Cleveland and the Cleveland Public Library to engage writers across Cleveland, allowing residents to connect with neighbors, share stories of their community, and draft new writing about what makes their neighborhood unique.


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Project Created By Literary Cleveland

Literary Cleveland is a nonprofit organization and creative writing center that empowers people to explore other voices and discover their own. Through an expanding roster of multi-level classes, workshops and events, Literary Cleveland assists writers and readers at all stages of development, promotes new and existing literature of the highest quality, and advances Northeast Ohio as a vital center of diverse voices and visions.

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