Black Wall Street Is Still Burning (A Poem) (2021)

If in 1921 Greenwood was a ‘hood,

They’d dismiss what happened as gentrification;

“Black Wall Street,” a phenomenal feat,

So historians erased it.

How the burning aimed to depopulate it,

A thriving Black community, although segregated.

White mobs massacred hundreds, burned structures

Stole land;

National Guard herded survivors into detention camps

Like marching bands.

It was a Nazi campaign before the Nazis grew strong,

That we still experience today;

From Harlem to New Orleans,

Remember Hurricane Katrina and what followed,

We still being herded away.

It happened first in the South, U.S. betrayal of Reconstruction

Whites terror forced millions to flee;

Now it’s happening in every ‘hood, community deconstruction

From sea to shining sea.

It’s a Black Holocaust the depopulation;

And expropriation of the New Afrikan Nation.

But we missing the obvious,

They feeding us guns, drugs and lust;

Buying us off cheap, to displace us.

With banks instead of blitzkriegs and mobs of racists;

It’s still ethnic cleansing,

Devised to replace us.

With white ventures, white hangouts,

White condos, white homes;

Disposing of us in prisons, 1.5 million fertile Black men missing,

That’s how many potential babies gone?

A 2-to-1 ratio of women to men, preventing reproduction,

Literal genocide;

Read the convention, did I mention,

Today the euphemism is “gentrified?”

The term brings no alarm,

It’s portrayed as fine;

Although it’s no different than 1948,

The depopulation and occupation of Palestine.

How many parallels need be drawn, before we see we’re pawns

Being played in a deadly endgame?

Aimed at Black, Brown, and Red people,

U.S. imperialism and white supremacy are to blame.

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