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A reflection on the 50th Anniversary of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

50 years later…

We honor the one

Who dared to dream in the nightmare of US,

And shook the foundations until he was crushed.

And some will point to all the things that have changed

For the better.  See how existence is now re-arranged?

A Black Middle Class and Black College grads,

Black CEOs who live with the haves.

And if that weren’t proof that we’ve got civil rights—

We chose a Black president—not just once, but twice!

Who could have imagined that 50 years in the past?

 

50 years later…

We honor the one

Who dared to dream in the nightmare of US,

And shook the foundations until he was crushed.

And some will point to all the things that have changed

For the worse.  See how subsistence has still been maintained?

The Brothers with the insolence to be black and armed

with Skittles and cell phones; just asking for harm.

Almost three thousand since poor Michael Brown

Like Freddy Gray and Eric Garner, squashed to the ground;

Philando Castile, Oscar Grant, Stephon Clark,

Walter Scott, Laquan McDonald,  Tamir Rice, in a park.

Just Like Fred Hampton and young Emmitt Till

Or the targets of Daley who said, “Shoot to kill!”

Murdered by those protected in blue,

Sworn to serve and protect.  Tell me, who?

The Sisters are not exempt from this fate, pushed over the edge by a cop on her tail.

The Children are labeled and destined to be squeezed through a pipeline that leads straight to jail,

And left there to rot in an 8 by 6 cell.

They’re not six feet under, but they might just as well.

The Families re-segregated by hidden agenda

That’s advanced and enforced by policy addenda.

And what right to vote?  With 5 of 9 approval,

States now reinstate thanks to Section 4 removal.

Who would have imagined, ‘cept one woke to the past?

 

50 years later…

We honor the one

Who dared to dream in the nightmare of US,

And shook the foundations until he was crushed.

Remember the Dreamer, but do not dwell there;

For the nightmare of US remains the hell, where

New dreamers arise on an old enterprise

To bend the arc away from the dark;

Who can imagine the change that will come to pass

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