I’m back with some poetry for you today, courtesy of The Academy of American Poets.

Now, I’m sure a lot of you have seen countless protest photos of everything going on around the world lately; I must say, some of those signs are worded a bit like poetry. After all, poetry itself is a form of self expression, put into words and sometimes using rhyme and rhythm whether spoken or spaced on paper.

Whatever the sayings come out to be, most of it is centered around black life, black culture, and black liberation… This is what’s on people’s minds, or at least in the media lately.

Photo by Taryn Kaahanui on Unsplash

Personally, I know I’ve spent a little too much time online lately and so instead of a long-winded blog post for you today, I’m keeping this one short.

I’ve seen a lot more appreciation for the creative work of black people lately and this largely includes poetry. The Academy of American Poets released an anthology (a poetry collection from different authors) called Black Lives Matter and it’s available online, so that is what I am sharing with you today.

You may click the link here to go through them all, but I’m sharing just a few I enjoy below.

 Enjoy.


not an elegy for Mike Brown by Danez Smith

Photo by Humphrey Muleba on Unsplash

I am sick of writing this poem

but bring the boy. his new name

his same old body. ordinary, black

dead thing. bring him & we will mourn

until we forget what we are mourning

& isn’t that what being black is about?

not the joy of it, but the feeling

you get when you are looking

at your child, turn your head,

then, poof, no more child.

that feeling. that’s black.

\\

think: once, a white girl

was kidnapped & that’s the Trojan war.

later, up the block, Troy got shot

& that was Tuesday. are we not worthy

of a city of ash? of 1000 ships

launched because we are missed?

always, something deserves to be burned.

it’s never the right thing now a days.

I demand a war to bring the dead boy back

no matter what his name is this time.

I at least demand a song. a song will do just fine.

\\

look at what the lord has made.

above Missouri, sweet smoke.

I Don’t Know What Will Kill Us First: The Race War or What We’ve Done to the Earth by Fatimah Asghar

Photo by Simon Berger on Unsplash

so I count my hopes: the bumblebees

are making a comeback, one snug tight

in a purple flower I passed to get to you;

your favorite color is purple but Prince’s

was orange & we both find this hard to believe;

today the park is green, we take grass for granted

the leaves chuckle around us; behind

your head a butterfly rests on a tree; it’s been

there our whole conversation; by my old apartment

was a butterfly sanctuary where I would read

& two little girls would sit next to me; you caught

a butterfly once but didn’t know what to feed it

so you trapped it in a jar & gave it to a girl

you liked. I asked if it died. you say you like

to think it lived a long life. yes, it lived a long life.

The Pedestrian by Tommye Blount

Photo by Simon Berger on Unsplash

When the pickup truck, with its side mirror,

almost took out my arm, the driver’s grin

reflected back; it was just a horror

show that was never going to happen,

don’t protest, don’t bother with the police

for my benefit, he gave me a smile—

he too was startled, redness in his face—

when I thought I was going, a short while,

to get myself killed: it wasn’t anger

when he bared his teeth, as if to caution

calm down, all good, no one died, ni[ght, neighbor]—

Photo by Brad Neathery on Unsplash

no sense getting all pissed, the commotion

of the past is the past; I was so dim,

he never saw me—of course, I saw him.


See you Friday.

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