henry 7. reneau, jr. Can't Breathe
In [di] visible #1
Who are you? Naming this salvation.
from that which they name sin.
Where are you from? What
have you done? What
have you seen? The splayed hinge of a dead black child.
The chalk outlined metaphor. Criminal.
Predator. Thug Who do you love?
What have you lost? What
do you dream? Your waking up into -ism.
Just at the edge of stardust &
a blue(s) lineage. The vulnerable underside
of what you know to be true
that blue(s) you away . . . the sky is crying
cain’t you see the tears
rolling down the street?
A thorn-studded las' nerve tried
struggling simply to exist
fenced in barbed wire. Armored
& spiritually starving
where the disenfranchised dwell. Close enough
to see through the door
but not tangible enough to walk through.
Blackness made combustible
as if we were weaponized
but would not burn.
What do you fear? What
will you become? The impossible
that rarely seems possible.
Who are you?
A kwanza candle that never becomes smoke.
Silence is the hunger
in your beggar chest.
A tongue coated in gunpowder &
that gathers the repetition of every ache
like gold in a blues man's teeth.
I can't breathe!
You cant breathe!
We can't breathe!
Note: Quoted lyric fragment from “The Sky Is Crying' by Elmore James
henry 7. reneau, jr. writes words in fire to wake the world ablaze: free verse illuminated by his affinity for disobedience and a panther courage that blazes from his heart like a chambered bullet exploding cause to reciprocate effect. He is the author of the poetry collection, freedomland blues (Transcendent Zero Press, 2014) and the e-chapbook, physiography of the fittest (Kind of a Hurricane Press, 2014). Additionally, he has self-published a chapbook entitled 13hirteen Levels of Resistance, and is currently working on a book of connected short stories. His work was nominated for the Pushcart Prize by LAROLA. email@example.com