Call it what it is

They are still shooting us in the streets. Not
just this year. Or even last. All of
my 73 years and my father’s years and his father’s
years. My grandfather's father, my great
grandfather, was born into slavery. You
know how that went.

Both of my grandfather’s moved
north. Looking to breathe that fresh air of
freedom. That was before the red summer of 1919, when
white folks killed black folks north, south, east
and west. And it never stopped. Let up a
bit from time to time. Went unreported even
more often. These days passing people catch 
it on their cellphones.

We’ve moved north. We’ve moved 
south. We bought
land. We voted.We got educated. We 
marched and protested. We sang,rioted and 
rebelled.  And even while 
we are marching, they are still 
shooting us down in the 
streets. Talking about new 
days,tearing down 
statues, retiring Aunt 
Jemima and Uncle 
Ben, feeding exploited workers fried chicken 
and waffles. Back in the day, I 
would have ended this poem 
with a call for REVOLUTION! Now
I just wait to see if they
will again diffuse this anger with 
drugs. Or if it will 
explode.

One thought on “Call it what it is”

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