A New Poem

Well, this was sort of difficult to write. I experienced a variety of emotions, including anger, disgust, helplessness and fear. I ask that you really consider the implications as you read this….
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living shadows

see Black Boy running
stumbling
case of soda pop
bag of chips
can of beans down his pants
rushing
to his makeshift home
in a formerly known land
his innocence was lost
washed away when the river jumped
the bridge
when the Kalashnikov sounded
when all the cattle died
because the war was fought
in his backyard

he is the man
the sole protector
of 3 young sistas
and an Elder brotha
whose body has been crippled
by years of misuse
he is the last toehold
of stability
on a ground that has
devastation
in waves

see Black Boy hustlin’ and dreamin’
at his corner stand
incense and oils
copies of music and
movies still showing
at the theater downtown
need a watch? need a chain?
he’s got what you crave
carry your bag? sweep your porch?
if you feed me i can be
your slave

see him looking
at the books shoved in the corner
kicked under the table
the ones he cannot read
because the school burned down
and the teachers fled
in the night
escaping the flames

see Black Girl shiver
in the rain
with her sign at her feet
will work for food
will sing for water
will kiss you for 50 cents
family turned her out
afraid of the virus in her veins
the baby in her shawl
listless
clinging
to a milk-less breast
too tired to cry
or close his eyes against the flies

see her crawl
and beg
and plead
with no words
just an upturned palm
an empty basket
where her young one used to rest
carries all her belongings
when its time to
move
again

see the people
you refuse to see
when you drop your eyes
avert your gaze
lock your car doors
and turn off the news
thanking God that
it’s not
you

twist of fate
trial of God
interference of shaitan
high placed corruption
tearing the fabric of society
the aftermath of
new colonies
this is
home

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