I made it home

Ceremonies aren’t for me

Because I made it home

I thought I was safe

Tho’ danger followed me off the plane

And hatred waited, stewing, for me

The smallest actions

Raise the danger

My Country staggers

Torn by grief and shame

My God

There’s bloodlust in their eyes

Those who never learned

Or will never care

We hunger, thirst, suffer and rejoice

Exactly the same

Shouldn’t they have learned by now

We are no different

There’s a pandemic killing us

100,0oo dead

Disease doesn’t care about race

It attacks us all the same

You and I must fear it for a while

I’m different from you

For I’ve something worse to fear

I must fear the police, yes our police

The public servants who do not serve

If I make the smallest mistake

That makes them think I’m the enemy

They do not see me at all

An honorably discharged American vet

They see only that I’m black

And for that they may kill me

If I don’t act just right

I made it home to the USA

But home is not the same

Momma cries if I go out the door

More terrified than when I served

On foreign soil

This USA might as well be

A strange and foreign place

Full of prejudice, hate, and fear

And greed, all want more

Yet here I belong

As my ancestors before me.

There is a crazed man in power

Who doesn’t think I’m human

Even though my blood, too, is red

And my tears wet and salty

I am not welcomed home

Brainwashed people I fought for

Applaud a coward in the Whitehouse

And If ever I dared to hope and doubt

Now I’m forced to see

The hate was only hidden

Dark, roiling just below the surface

He brought it up and out to grow

Fanned the flames

Until hate bloomed profusely

Wild, unbridled

The calm that was on the surface

Given over to thorns of hate

Already burgeoning, overgrown

Slithering darkness moves among it

Evil men who have their purposes

Ungodly hate

Rips at my flesh

Yanks me down as it must

Forces breath from my body

It fears me

So it tries to kill me

I pray on punctured knees

Stabbed unmercifully by thorns

Something set insanity upon them

The supposed good guys, protectors

Break my body as I beg

They’re casually crushing my throat

My brothers and sisters

Black, yellow, red, brown and white

My country

My America!

Help me

Help us

Forsake hate

Silence the evil

Rein in the dragons

Don’t let them kill anymore

Listen to me, I’m your brother

Your countryman

In the name of all that is holy

Help me

Help us

Or they will keep killing us

Unashamed

Out in the street

And then someday

It will be you

Yes, You

For hate knows no boundaries

Loosened it kills all

Even the children.

We’ve seen it

It must stop now.

Former print journalist, former mayor, retired law enforcement officer. Writing about politics and government along with random personal essays.

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