Dear people of this planet,
Kings, Queens, Citizens,
of this lonely, stone-skipping on universe waters,
of this cozy blue pebble that we choose to call earth.
I want to tell you that Today we exist;
That Today, we walk on a path
forged by the blood of preceding ancestors;
That Today, we are more pleasantly carried
in the arms of our history and the shoulders of time.
I want to tell you that great women and men
have sacrificed their precious existence
just for us to be here, at this crossroads of sorts,
at this place where we stand.
The time to honor our parents has come.
The Torch has been passed down to us,
and its fire still burns.
Today we find ourselves in the midst of a beautiful moment,
where we can bring true change and reform.
Today we need the long-silenced sounds from our past
to be spoken and heard;
The voices of our forebearers’ bones, scattered across the desert,
speak their truths to a listening sky
as the clouds carry their inaudible words in the wind;
Roots, sing their sweet lullabies to their family trees,
Soft, lovely melodies reaching every branch, every leaf;
Waves of blue oceans bring peace to the souls
of those who found a new resting place
while on the everlasting quest to find Home.
Today we must know who we are
and where we come from.
We need to understand the depth of our heart
and the power it holds;
The power to experience empathy, compassion, and love;
The power to know the true meaning inside our sweat, tears, and blood.
Today we need to remember
what makes humans humane;
We need to remember what makes us equal,
regardless of creed, ethnicity, gender, or race.
We share this planet, this moment,
this air, just the same.
Do not fall victim to the ideology or the wicked
telling you we are different from each other,
and all of us different from the rest of the world.
Let us all be different together, united,
imperfectly perfect and beautifully flawed,
phantasmagorical echoes fighting fights that, sadly,
silhouettes of historical ghosts already have fought.
But still, we must fight.
We owe it to the next generations to hand them a place
that is better than the place we received;
A place with no room for discrimination or hate;
A place that can give the goddesses
that live among men
the equality, the safety, and the trust
they so truly deserve;
Let’s hand the new generation a place
where the definition of Justice
derives from the word Just,
even for those who swore to Protect, and to Serve.
We need to keep marching ahead and
hand down the Torch.
We will not be stopped;
Just like you can cut all the flowers,
but you cannot stop spring from coming.
Human progress will always find a way to keep going;
We can never be stopped.
About this poem: I tried to bring together the ideas that: those who came before us began the fights we continue to fight today; our ancestors suffered for us to be right here, right now; united we stand; there is so much more we can do; and we must do it for the next generation of this world. Hope it’s okay, and as always, I do wish you -reader- enjoy the reading of this as much as I enjoyed the writing.
The poets featured here are currently incarcerated, and many of them are in federal prisons far from home. Your feedback is a valuable source of motivation and connection to the outside community. Post your comments, feedback, and encouragement in the space below the poem. Messages will be passed on directly to the author. Comments may not appear immediately on the site, as our team processes them to mail to the poets.