This is not a Eulogy

This latest photo prompt from RandomMichelle  comes, respectively, a day after and the morning after  Alton Sterling and Philando Castille had been added to the roll. What roll you say? Read the poem and see. 


When my words scratch across the skin of society
I want it to burn and leave a scar
No toothpaste to cool it
Because #BlackLivesMatter
And you must begin to feel it
The way we did when Michael Brown lay in the street
Turning in the Ferguson heat like rotting fruit
Or Sandra Bland ended up behind bars for being too rude
Because let’s not pretend that was about resisting arrest
She was an “Angry Black Woman” and her fire had to be extinguished
Like that lit cigarette that got blue blood so upset
And so in her memory
And in recognition of the moans of more ‘n more mothers and sisters
And sons
We’re not asking
Shrinking, shirking, shucking or jiving
How much last lick you expec’ us to take
Before you lick us again
Your bullets have lit a flame
We’re through being polite
I’m writing these words into the ferment
Enough! No more! Stop it!
No platitudes and placations, no half-assed justifications
Because it boggles the mind that you can’t see that we, too, are human
With a right to the smallest of concessions – the benefit of the doubt
You’d give a stranger who looks like you –
So, like Jesse said, if you’re not down for the struggle
Don’t tell us what to do or how to feel
Don’t come using your words to distract
We’re out here trying to live and
We no longer have time for that
Our tears taste too bitter
We, too, want some sweet in this world
So, in the name of Tamir, Trayvon, and my own baby girl
I claim the right to life
Because black mothers shouldn’t have to lose sleep
Every time their child steps foot in the street
Fearful that back talk or no talk, stand still or run fast
Each breath might be their last


3 thoughts on “This is not a Eulogy

  1. Pingback: Photo-Fiction #45 | Random_Michelle

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