Jim Crow

By JS

A Nation divided by frustration.
From racism, slipknots in a noose
Resulting in Asphyxiation.
Just from looking…at a woman that’s Caucasian.

I now know that liberty for all is a fraud,
And the symmetry dividing a friend and enemy
Is the line between the grave of a slave
And a “white” man’s ideology.

Like biology, I learned to dissect through
The flesh of a frog’s false reality,
That it can live in freedom
In protection of nature.

But like me
(Emmett Till)
He’s captured
For a tortuous experiment
Caused by hatred.

It’s like my soul feels
The vibrations
Of a tortured slave’s scream,
Begging for liberation.

Losing patience….
So I’m pacing….
In my cell praying
To God for blessings.

But my fundamental nature
is God’s essence.
So everyday I wake up
I’m in God’s presence.

This is God’s lesson.
If John 10:34 is true
Then I’m a vessel
For the miracle of God’s message.

My Story

By TD

Just two months ago my mom passed away
My girl moved on, now I’m feeling like Tom Hanks in Cast Away
Knives was just at my throat and I didn’t fight them
Dudes just robbed me because my shirt not tucked in my boxers and I don’t say, “Slim,” like them
My daughter only 11, sending me pictures with her hand on her hip
My son just turned 13, thinking about a hand on a clip
But don’t get me wrong, my baby mama a great mother
Besides these last 10 years, her and my best friend been sleeping with each other
I just called home from the (shu), my brother denied 8 calls
But when I was home selling drugs, he never denied 8 balls
Dudes been talking about me because of my situations
And even though I was in pain, I never once asked the nurse for medication
And when everybody was complaining, I still didn’t complain
Some went crazy and I still maintained
And when everybody was crying, I cried inside
Now I understand when Jadakiss said, “Why?”
I picked up a Qur’an, now I see what I didn’t use to see
And as I sit back and listen to a lot of these dudes, they remind me of who I used to be
But you know what hurts the most is when you gotta tell a story
About the people you love doing you wrong
The same family, friends, girls, so-called loyal ones
Posting on Facebook and Instagram, “Free me to come home”
(Damn)

P.S. God created men weak and it’s the trials and tribulations we go through that make us strong. We have to have responsibilities, and if you don’t have that, you’re not a man yet. See I thought I was a man also when I was buying cars, jewelry, blowing money, and having any woman I wanted. See I was a boy not understanding life because none of that stuff made me strong. None. If most of us died today, we won’t even have insurance on ourselves. See we desire the wrong things in life. Please, please change. A wise man always told me, “If you can’t change the people around you, then change the people around you.”

Mastering the Pain

By JG

Feeling everything so deeply
Can be a gift and a curse
My happiness is true bliss
Everything just works
Suddenly, joy is replaced with pain
Clear skies fill up with rain
I try to hold on
But can’t seem to maintain
My skies darken
Turmoil sets in
Damn
Never knew the mind could be like a wilderness one could be lost in
Lost many battles
Acting on impulse
Reacting with uncontrolled emotion
Never pausing to consider a reasonable course
I’ve felt the fire countless times
Intensified by a prison cell
12 by 9
A victim stance was my position
Playing the blame game
Meanwhile, in reality
My condition remained the same
Most my lessons come the hard way
But were received nonetheless
My understanding is that much greater
I feel truly blessed
Being a thought of Allah made manifest
I consciously create
Striving every day to be the captain of this ship
The true master of my fate
The war is far from won
But my book is far from done
I have nothing to lose
But everything to gain
These first few chapters have been spent
Mastering the pain
Learning how to love
Breaking my mental chains
Rising above
This next section will be marked by liberty
I’ll be free to pursue the queen that my heart desires
She’ll be free to embrace our chemistry
Won’t need a power of attorney
I can handle my affairs myself
I can eat life giving foods
That actually replenish my health
No more limitations
Everything is possible
With discipline, persistence, patience
I overcome all obstacles

Untitled

By WS

I was a young man on a confused journey.
Lost inside my own world.
Misled to a path that never existed.
A child in the streets who grew up to be a man with no vision
and no presence.
Outside, my world appeared bright,
but inside my heart was full of pouring rain.
The only love I ever knew was the streets.
Until it divorced me,
leaving me all alone.
I became a victim in my own savage game.
Untamed, until I was forced into locks and chains.
But never will I cry.

Everyday is now a blessing.
By losing, a winner I became.
It took me a long time to see it when all
I had to do was just open my eyes.

I Forgot Who I Was

By HW

I woke up one day feeling powerless & caged.
I felt lost and afraid, it was freedom I craved!

I felt like no one loved me & I was all alone.
I felt young & lost, but I’m fully grown.

Beat down by life & my own mind.
I let myself down and I started to drown.

I could not see tomorrow
& felt like I could barely get through the day.

I don’t know who I am anymore,
like my memory started to fade.

Deep down inside I know I used to be strong,
then I remember that I have been strong all along.

I might have slipped,
I might have fell.

I have to stand up,
I have to prevail.

I must be fearless,
I must be strong.

It’s a mental battle
and I’ll make it home!