Civil Rights

by Ashieka Daniels

by Ashieka Daniels

Wake Up My People
by Ashieka Daniels

Wake up my people

My beautiful, beautiful people

 

Black skinned

Brown skinned people

 

You in a haze in this maze my people

Confused yet amused by the abuse of this system

 

Yellow skinned

Red skinned people

 

WAKE UP…..

 

Elders Morn for my people

Even angles cry for my people

Others stare at my people

What have we become

 

Wake up my people

My beautiful beautiful people

 

Wake up, it’s time to wake up

Wake up please wake up

You’ve been sleep to long

 

WAKE UP

 

AINT NOTHING CHANGED IN 50TH YEARS MY PEOPLE

STOP TAKING HAND OUTS AND HAND ME DOWNS

WHATEVER HAPPEN TO

 

ONE NATION UNDER GOD INDIVISABLE

WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTIC FOR ALL

Liberty and justice for all?

LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL!

For all?

FOR ALL!

 

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO WE THE PEOPLE

We the people?

YES WE THE PEOPLE

 

Wake up my people

My beautiful beautiful people

 

by Natalie Pesick

by Natalie Pesick

 Hold On My Soul

by Ashieka Daniels

My eyes have seen the innocent slain in the streets
And lay for hours
My ears have heard the cries of mothers
And of fathers
My heart is filled with a passion to see justice truly revealed
Tell me
Is it justice or Just Us
Against a system designed to enslave us
For yet another 400 years

Sold on the stock market workin’ for free
Set up never to regain a piece of dignity

I often feel we’re in a no will battle
Until I am reminded that Jah will fight for me

Hold on my soul
Don’t get tired
Hold on my soul
Don’t get weak
For we fight for liberty and peace
Hold on my soul.

 

The Closing of Mary McLeod Bethune
by Kara Trojan

Were you alive when the
bricks began to crumble
beneath our hand-held, picket line
across the parking lot in front of some
school that no one bothered to name?

Our exhaustion-mumbled whispers
skipping across lips dropping to the street
that tapered ladders on gargantuan gadflies as the summer heat
etched the tear lines into mud tracks against
our ruddied faces.

Cohorts torn into flip stands
layered toward standing political sores —
tell me how to cross my t’s and fill in scantron circles before
the suits step over brown-bag lunches
to stretch the yawning yellow tape over the students’ lockers.

We were strung up the flag pole, almost posted as decapitated heads for the public.
The political analysts call this “The biggest school closing in decades.”

Under teeming hammer-strikes :
glasses shred to paper-splinters
before a young boy’s diploma
crying white chalk bricks
from university’s doors instead on to
prison yard orange jumpsuits.

Can we call this a school improvement project
or can we call this the Same Salem Witch Hunt
As unwashed teachers and students alike deck the sidewalks like
Either Christmas decorations on Michigan Avenue or
Inmates on the gallows platform

I’m completely unable to read the television marquee that told the neighborhood that City Hall was too stuffed with paperwork to defend the mothers and invisible fathers.

I’m completely unable to write out of respect for these children’s already-carved in stone pathway to the gutter, graveyard, and/or prisons.

In the first wink of dawn
We will all scatter
To our respective positions
Carved out in concrete before the
barricades fall
to flood the street.

by Ronald Sturgess

by Ronald Sturgess