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Jasper TX

August 6, 2004

BY MARILYN BUCK

1958
Bare feet Saturday
Stir up East Texas red roads
Shrieks slice heavy summer air
We White children play
Fearless in pine shadowed lanes
till darkfall
We’re called in
Behind screen doors

Sunday sermons spill
Through windows
Fanned on sticky heat
Hymns holler
Feet bound in patent leather and oxfords
ladies in big flower print dresses
Hats perched on dishwater blonde curls
Bob in prayer
to god
some different god?
Than the one down the road
in churches where Black families
pray for deliverance
That this will not be
a night of crossburnings
and lynchings


1998
pine drenched night
Red dirt road winds sleepy
No-longer-barefoot boys
Savage White men
play in the dark
Tear down the roads
Stirring dust devils of terror
Black man’s chained body
Drags bloody ribbons
his screams cut off
By lynching rope

James Byrd did not
get behind a screen door
in time

July 1998

Marilyn Buck 00482-285
Unit B, 5701 8th Street
Camp Parks, Dublin, CA
USA 94568.

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