“What do we do after we march?”
rub rubble from their eyes, (that’s
actually skin, bombed-blasted empty to seek
salvation beneath 6-year old lids.
actually, a thinly cracked, reddened goodbye
from a mother’s splintered throat,
actually the blackening power of a knuckle
to temple, in temple, tempted to sin by bared skin
actually, hope, chipped off by the slammed
cover of Pandora’s box)
how did humans access
what she never dared let escape?
Hope was an undocumented entity
caught in a box pumped with anti-psychotics,
satiated to stillness by the rhythm of their own tears
hope was not what crawled
out from the base of my spine,
my feet scraped across the veiled-
with-forgetfulness karmic time-warp
begotten by the multifaceted figure
of genocide. lungs raw, i know i’ve
been here before, before i died a man,
arrow to the left lung, before i died a woman,
brown Mary ravaged to rubble to lend passage to
lighter-skinned generations and migrants,
before i died as a boy
who got English crammed into his teeth
until his gums bled and he was called
“woke”, eyes bloodshot and
begs to the sky for mercy (where
are the children?) in the same
tissue-shattering language, i call
for freedom with sounds pregnant
with century long justifications
for murder, gums fully bled.
Still, the crowd behind me echoes.
Still, there are chants and repeats.
Still, they see me not dis-eased.