A family of niggers has been
caught by un-strayed bullets.
They were runaways in-a-crumblin’.
Over the blood-splattered hardwood:
the nigger bodies,
the unprayed-for bread crumbs.
A roaring over a megaphone, hounding
the remaining niggers to come out
to be forgiven for their boldness
to be born. They are waiting for the gunshots to quit cold,
for the silence of satisfied hunger,
for their fathers to lazarus their way
into their boiler rooms and preach:
The white crackas have started a fire.
The blackbirds crash into the nigger soot:
the neighbors celebrate-a-rumblin’.
The flames shove our mothers
out of hiding, some of them crying,
all of them carrying buckets full of water.
—from Poets Respond
June 3, 2020
Francis Santana: “I wish I could say this is a new poem that I’ve written within the past week, but the sad truth is that this poem is a response to what happened to Michael Brown in Ferguson in 2014. Same problems and same reactions six years later, and nothing has improved. This poem is for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and every black person murdered by the hate and racism that has become unique to the American fabric. Please consider donating to The Liberty Fund or a bail fund of your choice.” (web)