An afternoon of resting, reading and Jelly Babies!
Our Niece-in-law who lives in Olympia near Seattle is a poet. She has given me permission to share this very powerful piece with you, with her introduction.
“Here’s an old thing I wrote in an attempt to talk about the racial injustices that consistently hurt everyday people and I want to share it again on what would have been Sandra Bland’s 33rd birthday.
I hope one day for a better world. It starts with you and me. Let’s remember people like Sandra Bland, Tamir Rice and Michael Brown and Philando Castile and continue to speak their names so that people who wish to cheapen their precious lives will know that we do not, will never, stand with them.”
A Cleveland child’s melanin was Just enough Cause
Cold blood under the warm sun.
Six million dollars will not be enough
to sook his mother’s ache,
You can’t tell her this was an honest mistake.
A man had his breath pressed out of his lungs
On a live stream, on a street corner,
The world watched him beg for his life.
She was from Waller County, a pin drop on a map
That’s now a black hole void
where precedence discards prudence.
Where a woman can be detained at a traffic stop,
Found hanged in a jail cell,
A Fort Worth teen plead guilty
to assaulting a mentally challenged child.
Cold concrete, wire hanger, steel locker, chipping paint
Are the canvas onto which he scrawled the slurs,
the acid words and acrid variations
of the Purity of Hate in America.
He served no jail time,
It wasn’t a hate crime.
A small town in Michigan runs on brown water,
Their babies have rashes and their hair is falling out.
Never mind lead poisoning causes death and developmental delay-
Those kids have bed rolls over at Genesee,
They are pre-enrolled in the prep school for slavery,
The cops will let them know when it’s their time to go.
Their mamas smoke foil and rise above the pain-
Flesh of womb claimed commodity before the
cord stops pulsing
Gaslighted by the streetlights
which always blink red and blue.
If five white teens went missing
from the nation’s capital,
the whole world would mourn and wring their People magazines
Until their salty fingers all had sliver on sliver of papercuts.
Would put out a special on dateline NBC with
a reward for any information that
might lead to their discovery.
Tomorrow is a smog cloud,
Tomorrow no one is safe.
It’s polluted by the precedents we set, today.