In solidarity with Black Lives Matter, TNB Poetry has created this space for BIPOC voices to shine. We will be publishing work by Black poets daily.  Black Lives Matter.

Brown skin is a crime
Black skin is a death sentence
Enforced by those that use imagination as “laws”
Policed by those with fetishes of submission
The criminalization of melanin
Gives them an “excuse” to turn you in
Rape of the masses
Not enough bodies for caskets
The human spirit of melanated people
To find happiness in a volcano
The human spirit of melanated people
To find hope in a grave
The human spirit of melanated people
So solid, can’t be wielded down
Not statues, but monuments; they’re forced to see
They’ve set their legacy to destroy
Their generations they deploy
Faithful in their marriage with hate
They can’t stop, it’s their only fuel
Emptiness awaits them when they pause
Silence is as deafening to them as a genocide
An action we can still not abide
A magician with the tricks exposed
Their legacy handed down in many cloaks
Oppression, justice system, racism, white privilege
They own a label company to confuse you
Abuse you
Using human beings as puppets
Obsessing over a “master”-ry, they will never earn
No matter the blacker the berry
Blood still runs like cherry
Our revolution is our blood
Our oppression is our veins
Blood splattered on the pavement
A death that cannot be ordained
Melanated babies take their first breath
Forced to walk through fire
Regardless if they’re tired
If they survive, they’ll make you regret it
Your bounty is your life
Your appeal is your freedom
Babies get born; thrown in fire
A rite of passage
Everyday is a new attempt of “experimental punishment”
Each day, Every breath counted
Melanated babies grow up counting their breaths
Their humanity is put to the test
So faithful to a God
That does the only thing needed
Give hope & reassurance to all the ones bleeding
That our melanin has purpose
So much darkness endured
So much light assured
Darkness was needed for the tunnels
Creating pathways to EVERYTHING
Freedom is a mindset
These chains and arrows try to keep us in debt
We’re so ingrained in this country
Everything the sun touches, we made
Our bodies being looting are the real raids
In their search for independence
They built a history of dependency
Erasure of our roots
Roots traced back to Royalty
Touched by the Gods
Wasn’t meant to build a country
Was meant to wield an entire world
Wielded an entire world
And now it’s time to wield a new one
One of healing and fairness
One of equality and not oppression
One of unity and not supremacy
One of the greatest
Melanated babies’ birth is a crime
But we out here working overtime
To make sure our life isn’t just a rhyme

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