A riot is the language of the unheard

Southern trees
Bore the strange fruit
Of black bodies swinging
And today the streets
are filled with black 
Leaving communities and families searching for meaning
We can 
Uplift the race
But no matter how much
We thrive, strive and survive
I have to worry, teach and protect my son like it was 1855
I have to worry about his 
Pants, his shirt, his diction,
Facial expression, height, level of threat that may be perceived 
Because he is breathing
And therein lies the threat
Black life matters
But black life
Is threatening
My sons innocence is only felt by me
And this not not a new narrative
This is a recycled theme
From the continent
To the ship
To the shore
To the field
To the tree
To the factory
To the city streets
Black bodies
Lying in the streets
For hours
For years
For centuries
I weep for the pain
Of mothers, sisters, fathers, brothers
Wives and husbands
I weep for my own expectations
I weep for my own sense of hope 
That black lives will matter 
To everyone else
They love our music
Our laughs
Our athletic prowess
Our ability to turn a phrase 
Our ability to make them feel comfortable 
But they do not love 
Our soul (except to appropriate, parade around in black face, black voice and costume to make as much money and notoriety as is possible)
But they don’t want this struggle
They don’t want this pain
To have to yell, scream, and die
Over and over again
That black lives matter
Whether we riot
Peacefully protest
Tweet, post picture and memes
We still face the realization that we just might walk out of the door and not return
We might not come home 
We might be shot dead in the streets 
And be blamed and vilified for the crime of breathing
And as we 
Fight and cry
And struggle
And love and hate
And distract ourselves
And kill ourselves 
And love and hate ourselves
Underneath all of the chatter
We are worn weary
Trying to get the world to acknowledge that black lives matter

8 thoughts on “A riot is the language of the unheard

  1. Great “peace” Peach. I FEAR for my son’s existence. Our reality is sad and overwhelming at times. We must change the perception of the way our young black men are perceived. Seems like an insurmountable task, but it’s not. One mind at at time and one heart at a time we can make a difference. Thanks for sharing. It blessed my soul. ✌🏾️

    1. Glad it resonated with you. It’s so heartbreaking to see all of these video’s of these incidents and seeing the bodies just laying there as if they are forgotten about just makes me think of the strange fruit song and I’m reminded that the more things change, the more they stay the same. I still remain hopeful for a better future. But man!!

  2. I could hear your pain and hurt in your writing. The last two lines break my heart. I pray for an enlightened world and broken barriers, but I know the struggle will continue for you and your son…and all the other black lives in your world. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thank you so much! Sometimes I have nightmares about my son because I can’t help but worry. I think it’s so important that we continue to speak and document this pain because some people don’t believe it’s real

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