I heard the echoes of my kin slain,
Another brother has fallen,
Another brother silenced.
As the waves of anger sweep across the States,
A great lament is raised at the state of racial injustice.
Even in the south we feel the chilling shivers,
Resisting the wearisome tide of temptation to hate,
A vain attempt to cool the oppressors iron.
The pressure lingers on the neck of us melanin- filled, curly headed ones,
I can’t breathe,
A score and a half times he said.
We can’t breathe.
Our forefathers they sailed over the seas of the Atlantic,
Snatching babes from the breasts of mother Africa,
To whip, to suppress, to oppress-
To murder the human spirit
And extinguish the fires of hope and dignity.
Under the crack of a whip they bound young and old in clanging chains
and finally crucifying the likeness within them.
On Friday they hung a man on a tree and on Sunday worshiped a man hung on a tree,
They clad themselves in white externally,
while claiming to be washed white internally.
The passage of time has only emboldened the white-clad man,
Encouraged him to lynch without the mask,
To emerge from the dark shadows and perform his dark deeds in the light of day.
With the badge and the gun they continue to war against us…
They hide behind the silence of the masses,
and prowl under the shadows of indifference.
I can’t breathe, he said
We can’t breathe either.