Saturday, January 28, 2017

Poems of Resistance, Power & Resilience – Lorraine Currelley

Close up image of a microphone on a stage. The audience that is facing the microphone is blurred, appearing as a myriad of colors (red, white, green, yellow, etc.)
As the incoming administration builds its agenda of attack on marginalized people, on freedom of speech, on the earth itself, poetry will continue to be an essential voice of resistance. Poets will speak out in solidarity, united against hatred, systemic oppression, and violence and for justice, beauty, and community.
In this spirit, Split This Rock is offering its blog as a Virtual Open Mic. For the rest of this frightening month, January of 2017, we invite you to send us poems of resistance, power, and resilience.

We will post every poem we receive unless it is offensive (containing language that is derogatory toward marginalized groups, that belittles, uses hurtful stereotypes, explicitly condones or implies a call for violence, etc.). After the Virtual Open Mic closes, we hope to print out and mail all of the poems to the White House.

For guidelines on how to submit poems for this call, visit the Call for Poems of Resistance, Power & Resilience blog post


Rituals for Murdered Dark Sons and Daughters
By Lorraine Currelley 

Some poems are blood draped, bleeding murdered dark sons and daughters.
Dark mothers are born, carrying rituals for their womb’s missing. Tearing at skin,
hair, beating busoms, choking on screams filled with unearthed terror, acknowledging their murdered. Praying for the blessed journeys of dark sons and daughters joining the ancestors. Dark sons and daughters never to marry, pledge their hearts, know love’s tender embrace, warmth and peace. Leaving hungry grandmother arms with no grandbabies to hold, cuddle and tickle. Mourning lives they will never know. Gunshots fall on deaf ears of those not wanting to hear.

Poems cannot breathe on pain filled pages. Nor can they sit complacent when truth is never spoken. Must babies look like your children and grandchildren in order for you to feel? To care? Where are the united outcries to outraged poems cursing unnatural deaths? Dark mother and father bodies and hearts never rest. There is no peaceful sleep or hours when separated from our children. School and work remain more than school and work. Errands are more than errands. Separations are carved nightmares coated with ancient fears.

Mama lined us children up and planted kisses on our faces before we left home. She taught her children to do the same. Mama said, it might be our last time seeing each other, and these are the memories we want to carry. I’m an old woman and honor the sacredness of this ritual. The legacy of centuries of family members gone missing. Life has taught me the truth of her words. People were not created to feed oceans. Bodies were not birthed to fertilize trees. Still, we are vilified for crimes not our own. Our terror convicts deaf ears of those not wanting to hear. Hungrily we forge onward searching earth, land, sea and sky, for pieces of ourselves, mourning lost and celebrating discovery. Some poems are blood draped, bleeding murdered dark sons and daughters.

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