Table For None – poem

table for none

i have been offered a seat
on top of
next to
just below
at their feet
to scrape up crumbs and whatever trickles down
to sustain my gnawing hunger
but all it does is feed my anger
filling me up with rage
keep calm
be peaceful
wait your turn
they said
be humble and meek and pretend you’re not here
and your children may obtain a reward
someday
nonviolence is the answer
to the question i didn’t ask
while my bones are ground to dust
when my school has been shuttered
and my healthcare declined
and my belongings tossed out in the street
is that not violence against me?
when my blood stains concrete
and my neighbors gofundme
is that not violence against me?
there’s no room
they whisper
as they cast secret votes
then march because they feel they’ve been tricked
when i labor with my emotions and it goes
unrecognized and unpaid
is that not violence against me?
there is no table and nowhere to sit
because i flipped it
and smashed all the chairs anchored in place
and still they say
no not this way
please don’t undermine
sisterhood! human race! one nation under G-d
as plans are made to exterminate my kind
is that not violence against me?

Sumayyah Talibah © 23 January 2017

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