Listened to Nina Simone’s “To Be Young, Gifted and Black” today and it reminded me of Lorraine Hansberry’s book by the same name. To Be Young, Gifted, and Black is a collection of Hansberry’s letters, articles published in newspapers, and plays she wrote during her lifetime (she died from cancer in her early thirties). I read it from cover to cover, fascinated and inspired by not only what she wrote, but about which she wrote. About the struggles of being a writer. Of the loneliness, solitude (often self-imposed), and silence. Of the writing and rewriting and writing again… to still not be satisfied with what you have produced. But Hansberry was also extremely political. She cared deeply about the oppression of her people, and the issues of her time. Nina Simone and Lorraine Hansberry. Two incredibly talented and passionate women, who left their mark on the world. Queens.