a book bag; universally colored, tucked inside an orange jumpsuit, arranged as a jacket to metal doors, and bed bugs chained to delinquencies. The souls and minds of hungry men, guilty or innocent, are built together with frantic eyes, caught on the edge of paper thin cots,
kill beat kill.
This is the day lonely eyes are seized, ensnared on an island in a room intangible but authentic with blueblack feelings and disarmed manhood on suicide watch.
I take the #42 bus to BCC and wonder if we have ever smoothed the edges of our faces against books and noise.
I know you,
You are tongues of sanity, urban sidewalks littered with segregation and televisions
that avoid speaking our truths. You are mangled atrocities, an unchecked mailbox, a registered voter, left in a facility of shame. And even now as I pray a request of breaths, I can’t hold you, I can’t capture your beginnings.
a book bag; an orange jumpsuit, a language of injustice, a memory of valor. Be still now and
"For Kalief" has been published by The Write Launch in Poetry Issue five, September 2017