Untitled

By RW

When you feel sad
I wish you happiness

When you’re in doubt
I wish you faith

When you’re discouraged
I wish you hope

When you’re afraid
I wish you strength

When your heart is heavy
I wish you joy

When you’re troubled
I wish you peace

When you’re lonely
I wish you all love

No More Silence

By Shannon

This is my cry for a stop in senseless violence,
How many lives must be destroyed before someone, anyone
Shout to the mountain top, no more silence, no more silence

How could we overcome, if a promised dream is never realized
Due to a nightmarish reality that must end and if no
One is willing to step up, where does the change begin
To reverse a maddening cycle of gentrification, of generations
Who look just like me and you, who they look up to and emulate

So whose responsibility it is, to be responsible, before
Its just too late and what excuse could justify
Such a decision, when it’s obviously a grave mistake
That will surely impact our community, and reflect a
Negative mindset that we must counter and combat
With an objective view towards positive progress
That begins with self-evaluation and a want for change
A choice to make a difference, that can lead to an act of
Forgiveness and self-liberation, with you as our witness
And our guide in this act of unification, of prisoners against
Gun violence, men who can no longer afford to be quiet
And our debt to society is no more silence, no more silence

Silence

By SM

A moment of silence for the frontline workers risking their lives and those we have lost to COVID-19

Silence!
Close your eyes, inhale the essence of fresh air
And picture yourself floating on a cloud that heals your heart –
Cleanses your soul

Silence!
Picture yourself dancing in the rain
Ecstatic of overcoming uncertainty

Silence!
Picture yourself in the wake of a thunderstorm –
Sun breaking, rainbow in the sky

Silence!
Feel yourself at the ocean’s shore
Listening to the screaming waves

Silence!
Feel yourself at the riverbank
Anticipating going for a swim

Silence!
Breathe for the ones we lost –
Let your heartbeat carry their legacies over the hills of the valley
Through strong winds and under the sky of their heavenly home

Silence!
Kisses to the mothers, hugs to the fathers –
Gone but never forgotten

Silence!
Exhale and breathe life back into the world

My Crack in the Wall

By KC

Every day I awake in an open grave
And leave my slab to walk among the tombs

Massive monuments built to mark bad decisions and love lost
Life and freedom shattered by time being watched over by men with guns

I am not alone, for thousands walk with me
A nation of the undesirables left to rot above ground

Who like crabs hold each other back from reaching peace of mind
They thrive in the misery of their fellow man and thirst for dominance

They think the title King Crab is an honor
Don’t they see? King of the damned is still damned himself

I am different from most here
I walk in the land of the dead focused on life

Time is harsh, but my dreams have never decayed
Stepping stones made from ink on paper keep me on track

Words from loved ones lost, now found, tell me
I am human not an animal, and to never lose myself

Do or die among the dead until you get to the living
And never let the flame of life burn out, it connects us

So, I walk among the tombs every day
Looking for that crack in the wall, that slither of light

Today I’ve found her, and her name is…
Well that doesn’t matter

What matters in the end, today’s a good day
And my crack in the wall has just gotten a little bigger

A Message to the Community: A Letter from Prison

By RW

I offer my condolences to the families who have lost loved ones
And became victims to the violence

I offer my apologies for having been derelict in my duty and responsibility as a man
In not being the guardian, educator, and leader my communities needed
In order to be vital and life-affirming

I want to inform you that it is my goal to counteract the insanity of the destructive mindset
And I do not embrace those who prey upon any people
But particularly, my people

I want my voice to be heard:
Let the violence, drug dealing, physical, and spiritual abuse of the communities stop

As a man, I want it to be known that I have come to value and recognize
That the children need and deserve a safe and secure environment in which to grow and develop,
Be educated, have access to equal opportunities to excel,
And become who the Creator intended them to be

I ask that everyone reading or hearing this looks at a child
Whether at home, school, at play, in church, or mosque, and consider these words:

I am the African child

The whole world awaits my coming, all the earth watches with interest
To see what I shall become
Civilization hangs in the balance; for what I am, the world of tomorrow will be

I am the African child

You have brought me into this, about which I know nothing
You hold in your hand my destiny
You determine whether I shall succeed or fail
Give me, I beg you, a world where I can walk tall and proud
Train me, as is your duty unto me
To love myself, and my people
And to build and maintain a great nation
It is I who proclaim

I am the African child

The whole world awaits my coming, I shall not delay it
For I too have a dream