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“Heard ‘Em Cry”

August 10, 2009
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BY RODERICK BANKSTON

We are an historical people

How can we not make history
Repeatedly
The slave narratives told by the griots
echo from antiquity
up into the 21st century
The Invisibles given a visual
enslaved inna strange land
Our story is biblical
gruesome & beautiful
The ballot or the bullet crucible
That ultimatum’s still crucial
Mutual dreams deferred but never died
Another one finally realized
In 2009 on election night
Hear ‘em cry: “Yes We Can!”
And my afro felt justified
A legion of Black Martyrs
Rose up
Stirred up the still waters
creepin’ thru my depths
to testify to the meaning
in their deaths
admonished me that it’s still
struggle left
with Brotha Obama
be proud but expect mo’ drama
Beware of the snake charmers
tighten a armor
grow smarter
ray harder
reach farther
for enlightenment
whenever it gets darker
come hell or high water!

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