I read this poem the other day: What Would Gwendolyn Brooks Do? By Parneshia Jones. It clung to me like wet humidity, nagging me, thus I have returned and revisited its message. I have paraphrased the poem somewhat because it was long and had quite a bit of black resentment and invective.
I am not a racist but I tire of all the Black Lives Matter stuff and the shooting of police officers. The poem directs your attention to the ever in your face plight of blacks in America. I am of the opinion there are minorities other than blacks and I tire of: another black boy shot dead scenario. From what I have observed most of the blacks shot by police were perps with lengthy criminal wrap sheets. The innocents being killed by black gangs in Chicago and Detroit is a national disgrace. I deem this as a generational break down in the black communities. Where are the dads? Why are 70 % of black children illegitimate? Where are the traditional Christian family values in the black community? Why is being an unwed mother or a drug dealer more attractive to young blacks than becoming respectful individuals that are an asset to their community?
The poem appealed to my sense of frustration at the political landscape of America. I turn on the TV and immediately turn it off because of all the political exaggeration. The US is continuously bombarded with what seems to be an endless tirade of political conjecture. It seems there is an insanity all about us that is swelling to a crescendo like an operatic aria.
What Would Gwendolyn Brooks Do?
By Parneshia Jones
Dawn oversees percolating coffee
And the new wreckage of the world
I stand before my routine reflection
And button up my sanity
I ready myself once again
And bundle up my hope
For a moment I stand with ghosts
My ancestors surrounding me
Hold on everybody!
Hold on because the poets are still alive--and writing
Hold on to the last of the disappearing bees
And the Great Barrier Reef
Hold on to the one sitting next to you
Not masked behind some keyboard
The one right next to you
The ones who live and love right next to you
Hold on to them.
Hold on everybody!
Even if all you have left
Is the middle finger around your God given right
To be free, to be heard, to be loved.
And remember---Hold On!
And keep holding.
Another fragment of another poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox. This poem was an attempt to stir America into protest against the wealthy and privileged class and basically another liberal progressive tirade but it was written in 1906 so nothing really changes does it? As always I am captured and intrigued by some of the lines such as this:
Of independence in this mighty land
Call no chain strong, which holds one rusty link
Call no land free that holds a fettered slave
Until the manacled slim wrists of babes
Are loosed to toss in childish sport and glee
Until the mother bears no burden, save
The precious one beneath her heart, until
God’s soil is rescued