travelin north on rumblin boxcar trains
soft iron rails confess syncopated pains
slow rhythmic rush of spinning paddlewheels
full immersion baptism in Big Muddy swales
feint clip clop thoughts of ol Bess fade fast
hum a hue of delta blues to hard times past
I lift a quiet prayer to my Lord’s willowy ear
to quell the ugly whispers of yonder city fears

Jacob Lawrence
Panel 23
Migration Series

Duke Ellington:
Daybreak Express

Orlando
9/24/17
jbm

a snippit from a long essay The Path of Totality Part 2, "The Fire Next Time"
Lshassan Aug 16

Oh, say can you see
That racism is a big problem in our society.
A Colored citizens reality,is police brutality.
In this “land of the free”,
We are free to be attacked and harassed
We are free to starve and die
We are free to speak,
But we all know that's a lie.
If we try to make a change,
We will presumably die.
Say, if Martin Luther king didn't strive
Wouldn't he be alive?

I share-nowan-do
I share-nowan-do
I share-nowan-do

Fu shew-away u blacks

Icehousey, buddie wiser are..my MAN-he he hein kin..
Dan tell me wat fugshuis -Denmark!

DENMARK!

VUBAKS go

go Alaska, Africa, be free then...den

My Grandfather stood at Antietam

VUBAKS go

These medals, pins, regalia, -so special.

...not general... like you...

SPE i -CIAL

Der idsey con Tan nint-in shew balon to.

VUBAKS go

Everybody knows, civilization was created by Whiskey!

...whiskey...

I share-nowan-do
I share-nowan-do
I share-nowan-do

VEE SHAR NO WAN DO-O....

I voted for Drumpf

I share-nowan-do
I share-nowan-do
I share-nowan-do


TRUMPF -D

yeah...yeah

Think about it.
moziq Aug 5

Dance in the flowers of springtime like a flower without petals.

I have never heard of such.

Never heard of a flower without petals, a lion without a roar, a tree without bark.

These things are simply unheard of like sacred souls.

They never see these things or the stitches on your heart holding you together, never heard of a heart that doesn't love.

Never heard of a tiger without stripes and the pride of them , for what would we know if not these things?

What about Maya Angelou who told us of the caged bird that sings or Langston Hughes who taught us to take our dreams, spread our wings and fly with them?

A flame without heat is not so, it is ignited like the rage flowing through our veins when yet another African American boy is faced down,
on the ground,
unarmed,
with blood of his own flowing out of him.

Never heard of is it?

Just like the streets that would scream if they could speak, so would Andy Lopez if wasn't already six feet under just for being 13.

These are the things that are not unheard of, we just never hear them.

I think maybe it is time these things be recognized and not cast aside, so that maybe their is hope for a bright future.

That we might never have to see a world where flowers have no petals and lions no roar.

But finally at peace with no war.
Just love.

I wrote this so long ago but I still love it an I hope you do to.
axr Jul 16

well there goes another parade,
we're now marching with rainbows on our bodies and hashtags on our face
our roars pierce the skyline as the guns fire
bang! bang!
another bullet
in our direction
another life lost
and now we have a new sensation
young man murdered for a skin colour he didn't choose
young man murdered because 'he seemed like he was from the hood'
young man shot dead for following the rules

hashtags flooding twitter, photo sets on tumblr, double taps on instagram and likes on facebook
debates firing up and questioning the truth
we're marching
with the names of the dead carved on our skin
girls murdered for loving girls and boys murdered for loving boys,
a girl being murdered because she no longer wanted to be a boy.

we're crying,we're laughing,we're screaming and we're dying
and now the walls are covered in our writing
because we will never stop fighting

guess who's back

BANG; another kid, another life

another dark toned baby
taken away for no real
reason
another mother mourns
over her proudest accomplishment
gone
another brother cries when he
passes that street corner
another sister says nothing...
she is desensitized from
last week's loss

BANG; a different kid, a different life

for a movement that goes unnoticed far too often

Im new to this- please leave me feedback
Devin Ortiz May 2

Nothing to you
Because they look like me
Hashtags, forgotten in a Facebook feed
Should have done this, should have done that
All becomes irrelevant from a rata-tat-tat

Quick on the trigger, when color hits the eye
That racial bias keeps fatalities high
But that's me too, in case you forgot
Behind every tragic black body shot

Always a moment away
From a cop's bad day
They'll take their leave from work
And still get paid

The facts exist, believe it or not
Silence is compliance, so we'll still get shot
I'm white and black, but they'll only see the latter
So stand with me, shout Black Lives Matter

Ash Mar 30

We screaming black lives matter
But all they see is a bunch of disobedient slaves.
They screaming all lives matter
But what they meant to say is only white lives matter.
Is it because only white lives in power?
But nah fuck that, it’s just cowards in power.
The only thing that separates me from Rosa parks is a bus seat.
In the back of the bus while they spittin some heat.
Typical little black boy
Thinking his only option is to rap or ball.
His only plan is to rise to the top
Never fall.
But that white lady at the end of the hall,
Trying to get some sleep, so she calls the police.
NYPD, New York’s finest pigs.  
They rang out 4 warning shots
And now the little black boy dead.
Fell Before he ever had a chance.
But when will they realize?
It’s time to end this 500 year genocide.

Melanie Cruz Feb 17

This country was founded on the idea of being who you are in liberty, yet there are people trapped in closets because the monsters are on the other side and the darkness has become too comforting at this point; the face of death has become too beautiful to want to turn away. We are hidden, dancing around the idea of being hung as perfectly as that shirt that was “too gay”; planning our proposal to the Grim Reaper because, at this point, he is the only man who can “turn us straight”. We’re rolling out our blueprints and studying the structure of surviving instead of accepting that we’re different and actually living. The pride that used to live in us died a long time ago, maybe around the same time we were in the closet writing our suicide notes; for others, it was the day they were calling their loved ones for final words before their pulse was devoured by the hurricane.

This country was founded on the idea of being who you are in liberty, yet it was built off blacks and Native Americans forced into captivity; sold and sent off into slavery. The basis of this country is “freedom”, but… I’m still trying to find the point in time when we practiced what we preached, um - have you heard the joke about the Annoying Orange? He was elected president. No, wait, I think it was actually part of a horror movie. I’m sorry, was that racist? Because there are people on twitter who rant about how “REVERSE RACISM DOES EXIST” and “WHITE OPPRESSION”, now please don’t get offended, but it’s 2017 and the true founders of these divided, yet technically united, states are being held at gunpoint simply for being born that way. Just when we thought the crackling of our spines was enough to run the white boys away, they had to send their dads in to drop charges labeled “thief”, “thug”, and “felon” on our shoulders until they crushed our will to live. Now don’t have hope on justice for that is nothing but a fairy tale. If you haven’t already realized, the dragon of their arrogance grows the more they see us fail.

This country was founded on the idea of being who you are in liberty, ...but we forgot to include women in the subtext. Did I say “we”? I’m sorry. I meant HE, and not HE as in God who created you and me, but HE as in the Annoying Orange and every Arrogant Coconut elected to run this country. Apparently, we must conform to their manly mentality, their barbaric way of living because

“Women are too emotional”

“She’s probably PMSing”

But tell a guy he throws like a girl and watch his estrogen crawl from the deepest corners of his eye sockets as he runs away; their faces flushed with shame… because being feminine is something to be ashamed about. Throwing like a girl is offensive. Losing to your girlfriend in 2k is not Ok.
“You must obey me” they say.

“You belong in the kitchen”

And all we knew to say was “ok”.

You see, I’m tired of being tamed by men and am regurgitating all these false allegations.

I will not stop eating chocolate cake to please you. I love chocolate cake. It pleases me.

I will not watch my weight to protect your pride. Loving my weight is my pride.

I will not do squats because you want to post a picture of me on Instagram under hashtag thicc. I hate exercising. It’s exhausting.

I will only stop eating chocolate cake when I start to break out in places I shouldn’t.

I will only watch my weight when my doctor tells me I will die otherwise.

I will only do squats when I want to check myself out in my new bikini in the summertime.

This country was founded on the idea of being who you are in liberty, but it’s difficult to get the message across without learning the word “respect”.

You. Heterosexual judging me. Respect our various identities.
You. Caucasian individual. Acknowledge and respect our black history.
You. Cisgender male oppressing my womanhood. Respect your own mother.
You. Liberal teen defending your right to believe. Respect the worn out Cheeto puff.

And you will see…

Maybe one day we will know a free America.

Alex Negri Feb 16

Grab your pitchforks run him outta town,
only because his skin is brown.
If he knocks on the door don't let him in,
only because he lacks white skin.
Punch his face with a bang and a whack
only because his skin is black.
Pull out your gun shoot him in the head,
only because he grows his dreads.
Lock him in jail for nothing bad,
call him a loser and a deadbeat dad.

If you don't think you've gone too far,
you're wrong, your soul's as black as coal tar.

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