golden chains

it is not your imagination

its reality invisible unspoken

really real

for black & brown bodies

housed in bruised lives

it is an immutable truth

bearing down ruthlessly on a harsh reality

measured by any standard its not an individual

thing the brokenness is real

the complex trauma complete

in its totality engulfing us like high

tides that never recede always gasping

for air sharp things pressing into tender places

cutting into spaces not meant to bear weight

scarring us permanently with its  brutality

a jagged defining clevely weighted reality

we carry inside us like razors wrapped in

the demands of now while yesterday’s pain is

fresh on your breath hundreds of yesterdays

stretching back centuries soured in bellies

belched with stark clarity into today crowding out possibles

growing the things we must carry

in the race where we are hobbled still winded from

yokes around necks arms tired from lifting

& the strain of baggage older than we are

 smelling of blues piled higher than the

good ship Jesus sailing low through murkish waters

like law a hollow collection of words subject to interpretation

by madmen & wolves

we have been murdered by ink strangled by text smothered

with the things they can not hear will not see refuse to own

like pushing first inhaling more than their portion then more &

again some more

the lack of calluses on hands not sore from climbing

the impression of boots

standing on top of skulls fingers dripping blood no language

for the complexity of the trauma invoked alive outside words

we live inside pressed against the glass stitched into straight jackets

shadows blurred on the fringe

whispering the storm in which we ride

it defines the whirlwind & our forward movement

running against the wind burdened

seeking forward striving against reason

in mine fields side stepping pitfalls avoiding the merry go round

funerals  sentencing   prisons

the inverted religion santicfying the profanity of the battlefield that is our lives

its not imagination it is real

its not you

not us not black women

men boys brown poor outsider folks

your lived reality

is real

carry it with care

or you will implode

or perhaps