Purposed Survival

L’Tajh Carter

The existence of melanin is a rebellion
against oppression nostalgic of shackles and gunpowder
Melanin is always counted to fall victim, fated to be the bodies fell upon from the inside by malice, to be killed by the repetition of a force policing oppression
Melanin is struck by injustice from the lawless,
hopeless from stacks of envelopes and brittle numbers,
and the minority to lead in caskets
Yet death has met enough kings and queens
to know the diaspora does not fall easily

Each century of inequity
summons insurrection targeting the oppressive engine of society
No longer will melanin stand by, frail to the idea of standing up,
dependent on pretty promises prolonged by politicians
No longer will every day become twenty-four hours fought for in vain, for such
survival is an act of resistance and freedom:
Encountering the worst,
yet prevailing to tell the legacy,
awaiting the sunrise of tomorrow

L’Tajh Carter is a poet residing in Philadelphia.