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I say can you see
My beautiful Black people
The light of the dawn
Of a new day
The day we exercise our rights
And we make our Black voices heard
The day we stop killing each other
And start loving each other
Because our real enemy
Stepped into our souls
And lives in our minds
And we rap
And party
And glorify “The Man” inside
And I heard our King say
“I have a dream”
And Prince Jesse
Followed the plan with
“Keep Hope Alive”
and our children
are being spoiled by our
lack of pride
at ten I heard
the voice H. Rap Brown
calling my name
telling me who I am
and who I could be
KKK in our Black skins
Doing a better job of
Than the other man
Start raising your sons
And loving your daughters
So they can love themselves
Because this is war
And this is rebellion
And this is truth
Ahhhhhh, my people
Where is your pride?
Where is your strength?
And the institution
Takes us down
And there we rest at
The bottom of the well
Murky Black voices
At the end of the tunnel
And I say
Where is our power?
When will it override
That “Man” inside
Wear it on your sleeves
And mark it in your stride
And the Republicans
are eating us alive
While the Democrats
Beg for our vote
Because this is war
And war is pain
And war is gain
And war is deliverance
Because somebody’s got to lose
Ahhhh, my people
Can’t you see the times?
The day Geronimo and Nelson walked free
The day we burned L.A.
And we rattle our own cages
Run back inside
And shut the doors
Black on Black crime
Is the number one killer of our souls
Destroy a Black child
Destroy a Black Man
Destroy a Black child
Destroy a Black Woman
Start loving yourselves
And loving your children
And loving your women
For we have no princes
to show us the way
While the Queen sits on her throne
And says “A Rose is still a Rose”
Ahhhhh, my people my beautiful black people
Where is your voice?

"Let the brain stumble from its hiding place, From it's cellblock, to the edge of oblivion to come to itself..."

--Safe Subjects - Yusef Komunyakaa

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The following comments are for "Can Somebody Say Amen?"
by ttdavis

got a feeling reading this like someone walking over my grave... potent plea for empowerment this. resonant, excellent.

( Posted by: AuldMiseryGuts [Member] On: November 27, 2006 )

Thank you so much AuldMiseryGuts for sharing your thoughts. I so appreciate the encouragement, and the constructive help I get here.

Now that T-Day is over and the folks are gone, I'll have more time to peruse and return the favor. I take your comments very seriously because I think you're an awesome writer!

( Posted by: ttdavis [Member] On: November 27, 2006 )

Thank you for sharing your experience. I have to admit that I was a little concerned about this piece would be received, but you're right. It is a plea for our consciousness to come alive. The quote from Yusef Komunyakaa in my signature emptomizes my feeling here. I had the pleasure meeting him at Cave Canem and that experience has revived my faith that the "voice" isn't silenced yet.

( Posted by: ttdavis [Member] On: November 29, 2006 )

luv it
This poem hits me like a double edged sword. One that doesn't easily enter me. Its sting resonates in my center since I am Afrikan Amerikan. I am reminded of the wounds I carry from long ago days -- the ones attached to the words of my great grandparents...sharecroppers, slaves, a wash woman.

The sword is pulled out with hope, still painful, but necessary as it puts me in the mind of the struggle to make our communities better and raise the level of consciousness of each and every person I come to know. Prayerfully, my little old voice can's will heal.

( Posted by: innarae [Member] On: November 29, 2006 )

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