Wednesday, May 11, 2011

POEM FOR MAY



Our ancestors suffered the lash
the devastation of their children being ripped away
only to drink in the pysche of the oppressor
Of our bodies being used to inflict pain
to force depraved pleasure
to breed
to erase...
Our words
re-written
re-phrased
filtered
made "easier"
for those who would rather press us down
hoping the cracks will swallow us whole


The desolation of not having anything to eat
of standing in the welfare lines
of working with no return
Of playing the game to feed
to clothe
to shelter
to get by
some call it the "shuck and jive"
others call it the grind
We survive


We've felt
the sting of unanswered questions
cold lessons
about living
Black
living
poor
living
a woman
living
Other
than the norm


Still
In a tiny space
a hand touches the head of a child
whispering secrets passed down from determined mouths
saying,
"Keep going young one. The world is yours.
You're a shining star you are.
I've tried for you, for you to live.
Ain't that a blessing?
Ain't that a victory?
Ain't that a gift?
Keep going, keeping going, keep going..."
And the child sleeps
And the child can rest
And can find something in the pockets and corners
of resistance
in the side glances
in the little rhythms of "mhmms" and the "i know what that is"
in the head nods
The gazes
In the people gathering to lift their voices
To make the world one where all can live
The child can rest
the child can dream
just like those before us did

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