The “wind chill factor”

Is an estimation of

How the cold’s perceived.

Eintou #6

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the Robert Taylor Homes in Chicago. Photo: Getty Images

During segregation

Separate rarely was equal.

Black people were considered second-class citizens.

Jim Crow was de facto and de jure

Denial of African-American citizen’s human rights.

White folks’ inferiority complex

Is lethal!

WHITESTOWN (a Kwansaba)

Photo by Keith M. Kelley

Proudly painted

On the water tower-
On the all-white… water tower.

Must be a “sundown town.”
Black folks still need

Green Books!


Pay it forward
Pay attention

Attention to details

Attention deficit disorder

Disorder driven by delusions

Disorder in the court

Court of law

Court of public opinion

Opinion is subjective

Opinion cares not for facts

Facts overwhelmed by fiction

Facts are based in reality

Reality television

Reality for those who cannot handle drugs

Drugs taken to self-medicate

Drugs that numb

Numb the senses

Numb the pain

Pain is a signal

Pain from trauma

Trauma begets trauma

Trauma often haunts survivors

Survivors of tragedy

Survivors of abuse

Abuse by caretakers

Abuse of power

Power perceived to be absolute

Power to the people

People make the world go round

People are followers

Followers seeking messiahs

Followers of false prophets

Prophets still exists

Prophets are not motivated by profit

Profit in the eyes of stockholders

Profit is why corporations cannot be trusted

Trusted to act in the interests of the people

Trusted to do what is right

Right is not always profitable

Right here right now

Now is the time to do the right thing

Now is the best time to act

Act like the adult in the room

Act like you know better

Better is not necessarily best

Better merely implies growth

Growth and development

Growth can be be stunted




BEHIND THE POEM: On January 2, 2019, I attended a “Write In; Read Out” hosted by the University of Chicago’s Writer’s Studio. The event featured a 4-hour writing session in the Sulzer Library followed by a 2-hour reading of participants’ work at a local pub. The Writer’s Studio projected wrting prompts and offered suggestions on way to play with language. However, I was inspired by the disco ball on the ceiling (pictured above). The following is one of the pieces I wrote.

Dangling motionless above the silence,

A disco ball hangs in the library.

A vacuum cleaner whines its defiance

to patrons focused and sedentary.

While discos have long since gone out of style,

Their glass-covered balls liven up a space

Whenever they’re spun in the light. Meanwhile

The disco ball screams that it’s out of place.

A room full of writers working on scripts.

All that’s heard is faint scratching from ink pens,

keyboard clicks, page turnings, and zippers zips.

Brought together as colleagues if not friends.

Some people nod and smile to be polite.

This place seems too quiet for me to write.


Messenger: St. Louis woman did 20 days in jail for speeding; now rural Missouri judge wants her for 6 more months.

Yet another case

Of mass incarceration

Targeting black folk.


She was: caught speeding,

Did her time, and paid her fines.

But that’s not enough.


The deal was bogus.


Breathing while black
Breathing fresh air polluted by hate
Hate is suffocating
Hate of non-white skin
Skin is only skin deep
Skin should not determine privilege
Privilege bestowed upon the white
Privilege denied to the black
Black America is a lost colony
Black America is still America
America the united states of
America the beautiful
Beautiful people
Beautiful conceptually speaking
Speaking to the base
Speaking in English that is broken
Broken like truths held self-evident
Broken like promises of freedom
Freedom denied
Freedom of speech
Speech is costly
Speech is wasted
Wasted like education
Wasted like victims of being black
Black America is a lost colony
Black America is still America
America the united states of
America the beautiful
Beautiful minds give birth to
Beautiful dreams
Dreams of paid debts
Dreams we wake up and forget
Forget black history never taught
Forget to keep breathing
Breathing while black
Breathing fresh air polluted by hate
Hate destroys
Hate consumes like fires
Fires that rage after droughts
Fires next time Baldwin wrote about
About race
About face
Face the music we try not to hear
Face the nation has a bad track record with colored people
People with vaginas people with penises who love people with penises
People perpetually persecuted through prison pipelines for being black
Black America is still America
Black America is American