Black innocence


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.

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