to our youth in the streets


Thank you for taking up the cause

for taking on bright lights and not freezing,

for seizing the issue and not flinching

and not folding, for moving through our tears

and your fears which must be there

which are there, ever present behind closed eyelids

and dreams and even waking moments

you carry them through words you must say,

you swim through that treacle that could

embalm, could preserve could choke even as it feeds

you could stay stuck and yet you gather

and you plan and yet you clear your throats and

call us to listen how even choked and choking

heartsore and stumbling you move forward

you coalesce you make arguments that cleanse

that sear that burn obfuscating debris, clear dross

of entrenched rationales of life-taking, of warped

permissions of deranged access,

don’t listen to the naysayers, don’t,

ignore their percussive braying about

what’s become reasonable, their platforms

boom loud, are hollow bleating, you inherited a world

that has made the unthinkable usual

don’t listen to them betting against you

they always bet against you when you say no

to what prevails, when your fresh eyes refuse

to see the unseeable, foreseen, predictably

tragic, decrying the inevitability of senselessness

don’t let their demeaning misnomers distract you

whose lives are on all the lines and ransomed for

profit, whose lives underwrite the very notions

that steal them. we grieve for you we grieve for you

we’ve forgotten we’ve forgotten we’ve forgotten

to think twice about it, about the shortest distance

about straight lines, so thank you for giving

us back to ourselves who called for peace

years ago, who cried for parity, who marched and

moved and were not stuck, or tired, or worn or weary

or silent, who fought for our lives, who sometimes won