The Dream, The Vision
Gunshots have fired.
A young brother hits the ground,
The blood of a doe
Spilt on the pavement.
The crime is not of character,
Complexion is the indictment
And the reason for a mother
To have to bury her sweet child.
Hearing the tragedy
I looked to my right and I saw
That I was not alone.
“No justice, no peace”
On signs and on TV,
People lying in the streets,
Lady Liberty can’t breathe.
Then I looked to my left and saw
Those who have forgotten,
Who perpetuate stereotypes,
Those who are lost and
I climbed atop the tallest thing nearest to me
Not a soapbox, a park bench I believe
And I looked to the Lord to bless
Me with the strength to say this:
“Brothers and sisters,
How can you be so satisfied?
Do you not know the crimes
Taking place in our lives?
We’re in the land of the free,
So why does our freedom come with chains
That have oppressed us for centuries
That keep us far from living the same?”
Everyone stopped and looked my way,
“You’re a child.
Could you know of
Shackles and chains?”
“Hold your peace
Leave preaching for pastors!”
But still I continued:
“I do not know how the world should be,
I must admit,
But blind violence, hate, and bias,
It can’t be like this!
If it is…
Then something’s got to give
Because it’s time for a change;
Change is long overdue.
To my community as a whole,
Crimes against our own,
Do not make us strong.
It just takes the weight off
The backs of those individuals
Wishing we were gone.
A house divided cannot stand
A race divided shall fall
We must unite!
Because the war is not won
To my men and boys,
Know you are more than criminals and thugs.
You are what the slaves had so hopefully
So untie the flags that keep some divided.
Put down the guns that many survive with.
Truth is now your only weapon.
Love is your new survival tactic.
To my women and girls,
Know we are more than hips and thighs.
We are catalysts to change.
Enough is enough,
We surpass demeaning names and stereotypes
Laid out by the media through its twisted portrayal of black women’s lives.
My young people,
Know we must keep our heads high
And not exhibit shame
In our looks or ostracize any other for theirs.
Why care who’s dark and who’s fair?
Fair skin does not define your beauty,
Your heart does.
Dark skin does not define your worth,
Your heart does
Curly hair does not define your competence,
And neither does straight.
So why do we divide ourselves
On the basis of these traits?
We fight for the same side,
Can we please try and act like it?
For those who want equality,
Let us change,
Let us unite,
The Revolution is
Then I looked in the faces of the crowd
Saw hope and inspiration in those
Who had heard me.
They tore down the dividing walls I had revealed,
Looked in the eye of their neighbor and saw friend not foe
Many took to the streets and joined those marches
Women wore their natural hair happily and the media was confronted.
Those prodigal sons found their way back from sin
And those who had forgotten the fight, had remembered again.
It’s fun to dream.
You can stand fearlessly on your soapbox
And know people will listen
They will not boo you down
Or misconstrue the message.
Reality is cold
But today I got bold
Turned my dream into a poem
Turned my dream into a vision
This stage, this page, this platform is my soapbox
This is my message and I hope it brings power to all those who hear this