acrylic on canvas
I often wonder "how" we as a people made it through to this day. America has never been a true friend to us. It has gone out of it's way to kill us off in myriad ways. Yet, we are still here. Shining despite it all. What does that say of us? Outside of the power of God and our faith in God? How did we make it here, where I can pen this narrative? I posit that we made it because we had each other. We had an indelible love bond, African men and women. Who leaned on each other in the most dire conditions. Rape, enslaved, the diseased hulls of slave ships, whips, lynchings, bullets, etc. All put in place to control and destroy us.
We had hope.
And here we still stand.
In our blood
are memories of those
who survived the water.
those who let faith and love/
serve as the rising sun...somehow
they knew tomorrow would come.
they could hear the grass singing under the blowing of a wind that blew East
beyond the splashing of bodies overboard.
beyond the intonations of insults aimed
to crack black skin like blue-eyed buck breaking.
beyond the bleeding calloused hands infused with
cotton seed hulls.
They were the knowers that
forever they would live...
...in that forever our love is
rooted, we are blood bound to survive this thing called america (together). A memory we can only feel, not remember,
For as much as things have changed
things have remained the same/
we have no roots here, only what we have
threaded through our DNA by climbing the ladder...
when we swam in the river that day
on November 4/7.
the sun bounded off of you
as if it were you...it's happiness spelled
out along the smile on your lips,
drowned in it's vastness.
that moment i understood
well before "u.s."/
it connected me too, us,
along those wretched Atlantic "hejiras"
connecting our eyes telling songs
of freedom that we had yet to meet/
but with you
I knew we'd get there.