Black Lives Do Matter

Dionne D. Hunter
Off in the distance you hear many different voices
United
Rising
Chanting
Black Lives Matter, Black Lives Matter
You attempt to control your emotions but the more they chant the more you lose control until finally it’s all just too much
You scream don’t you know that
All Lives Matter, Blue Lives Matter.
Shocked by your outburst the crowd quiets until one voice proclaims that throughout history Black Lives have been valued far less than others,
We’ve been treated as livestock
Children spit on as they entered newly desegregate schools
Billy Holiday explained that strange  fruit blossomed and hung from trees
Rodney King videoed beaten in the streets
Two resumes exactly the same except for African American name, only one will be called
But you dare to exclaim that All Lives Matter
My question is to who
Police at the end of their shift remove their uniforms
Blacks however can not remove their color although many have tried
Poisoning themselves with bleach
But as Beyoncé says we wake up like this
But we also fall asleep like this desperate to assimilate but preconceived notions cover us from head to toe like our entire bodies have been dusted for finger prints
Our sons fits the description of what you think of as dangerous
Tall with Dark skin
But We’ve taught them if stopped to keep their  hands on the wheel and to always say yes and no sir
Though history has proven that even this is sometimes not enough
1984 My 18 year old uncle stopped for a traffic violation
Taken in alive and returned to us in pine
The story of so many black lives that did not matter
Can’t you understand that the only difference between me and you is the color of our skin
You see if I scrub and scrub like yours
Skin does peel
Tendons come on display
Can’t you see we’re all the same
I scrub as I pray, please don’t kill our sons
I scrub and scrub down to glistening white bone
I scrub until I hear my ancestors scream Black Lives Do Matter
I pray Mr. Officer next time you stop a young black male that fits the discription of what you think of as dangerous, please treat him with the same respect you want afforded to your child
Because that young Man may be my son, and I want him to come home safe and sound
Reality rushes over you
The haze that covered your eyes clears and you begin running those statements over and over in your mind
But as you contemplate their meaning out of the crowd your old friend unconscious bias reaches out and taps you on the shoulder saying All Lives do Matter
it’s not your fault some matter more than others.

Schwarzwes

 

Strawberries and whipped cream can whet the appetite, but the delicious poetry of Dionne D. Hunter will have even the tightly laced listener longing for more.  For booking information please contact Redd.talez@gmail.com.

Poetess REDD: Redefining Elegance Determination and Desire

2 thoughts on “Black Lives Do Matter

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