Friday, March 18, 2011

All In A Single Sitting

I'm listening to birds chirping in the background
There's water falling in a fountain nearby
I'm surrounded by people sitting at patio tables
People walking about, going about their business
A slightly gentle breeze blows in
From the marina across the way
A U.S. flag flies at half-mast
I've just put the finishing touches
To a poem about the loss of someone
Life and death,
Considered in one sitting
I choke back the urge to cry
As I get up and walk away.

© 2011 Joseph Powell

A Black Man's Lament

'My man, look what they did to my man'
I've heard this cry
Too many times to count
I've cried it myself a few times
Another brother,
Somebody's son,
A child's daddy,
Felled by an assassin's bullet;
Felled by a cop's bullet

Too many streets have been covered in blood
Like a ballroom's stage
Or a motel's balcony
And the mothers cry
And the wives and sisters moan
And the whys are hurled to the sky
Screamed in anger,
Screamed in grief
Only to go unanswered
And the silence is deafening
Outdone by weeping
Drowned out by sorrow

I write this as a man,
Somebody's brother,
A mama's son,
A father
And a husband,
A man troubled,
A man searching,
A man hoping
And praying
That no one has to endure
Me being taken away unjustly,
Taken away violently,
Taken away senselessly

Maybe someone will read these words
Maybe someone will heed these words
Maybe God will hear my cry first,

© 2011 Joseph Powell