By Courtney Taylor
Duck when you hear gunshots, a natural procedure
You’ve never heard them in person before but you know like heat seeking missiles they will find their way into making damp confetti out of your body
Every waking moment is a test in survival
Every second a field day for the mind and body
You don’t mind because you knew no better
Growing up all you knew was that the world wasn’t fair
That when you turned on the news and saw black and brown bodies strewn across this earth that this was just another day in the land of the free
The brave one is you.
To be a man with no country at such a young age
You do not yet realize just how other you are
How your skin is a caution light to those who reflect
How your smile, seen as a beautiful force of nature by your mother, is something as sinister as the devil in the eyes of those not like you
You do not have the luxury of innocence
You cannot be just a child
Because of the heritage of your skin you will be seen as a problem long before you are seen as a person
It doesn’t matter where you come from.
It doesn’t matter where you are going.
They will try to destroy you all the same, make an example of your flesh.
Show you that your body has no right to be here
That the sight of your blood on the ground will be taken with as much weight as they would seeing road kill
You have no need to fear foreign enemies when those who seek to cause you harm live right across the street
You are not in a place that cherishes you
You are not in a place built for you
But between these pillars of hate you will create homes
You will mound the darkness into ladders to help all like you climb out of the trenches
It does not have to last for forever…
The past is done
The present is fading
The future still remains
Within you are centuries of royalty and no weapon formed against you shall prosper.