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Poetry: When Shall We Breathe?

Down beneath
I can’t breathe
Centuries on, I remain at reef
Deep is my grief
Forget that book!

I’m black and out
Coloured, I surely standout
And truly don’t count
Pushed down to out
With nowhere to look
Forget that book!

That book is just grammar
Being black, ain’t no drama
I’m guilty until proven innocent
But he’s innocent until proven guilty
Forget that book!

That book
Is the oppressor’s hook
My liberty he took
Justice for me, a fluke
And yet he calls that book, a law to watch our back.
Damn! What crime is it to be black?
Forget that book!

We’ve screamed and screamed and yet we stuck!
True freedom and justice we still lack
What they offer always whack
No freedom in the land of the free
Potus blazing abuse
Rights making no use
No equality in the house of justice
What at all is this?
Forget that book!

My kids grow in fear
I can no more bear
The rules for them vary
And that makes me wary
Pulled over, my kids better pray
They are not their prey
Pulled over
Their kids know it’s just a chat over
Human are mine and same are his
But justice somewhat 
remains amiss
Tell me, where is the book?

I just unearthed
That jogging is their preserve
I jog, I’m shot
Unarmed, I’m shot
Asleep, I’m shot
Toy gun I’m shot
Cigarettes, I’m choked
And when choked
The bloody bloke
Chokes as though for the slaughter I am a goat
With friends to boast
There is no book.

Brutalised in slavery
Oppressed in freedom
What is my wrong?
My colour or my person?
Tell me, who is the book?

We are honoured to be coloured
As the sun rises and sets
So shall my oppression someday set.
Till then
When we know not when
We still can’t breathe

Harriet Tubman, Marcus Garvey
Martin Luther, Kwame Nkrumah, 
Nelson Mandela, we still can’t breathe

We must rise from beneath
And truly breathe
That day shall come
That day, we shall overcome!
But when?

Dedicated to my black brothers and sisters who have fallen to white supremacy and police brutality

Authored by: Senyo Hosi, 30th May 2020

By Senyo Hosi

Posted by: Senyo Hosi



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