• southendstories

Unity

A poem by Rowan McAlpin


[content warning: this piece has mention of murder, gun violence, and racism.]


A drawing of blue and teal peace sign with red swirls and red, green and orange flowers and leaves surrounding it
Drawing sourced from Creative Commons @normanack (flickr).

he was not the first

not the last

and yet he was the one

that brought into focus

the injustice that had become

commonplace


the brutal truth is that

thousands of

men

women

children

blacks

immigrants

have been killed for no reason

at all


he brought to clarity

the world that we live in

the place

called the land of the free

in which so many people

are not free

and are counting down the days

until they are pulled over

held at gunpoint

threatened

or

pinned to the ground

by police

the people you are supposed to trust

or

kneeled on

and KILLED


the injustice

the racism

defies the human nature

he could still be alive today

if we had changed 20 years ago

even 10 years

even 3


but we didn't

and he, along with many others

payed the price


we,

you and i

again have the chance

to stand up

to protest


if everyone unites

there is hope of a better future

a future in which

blacks

whites

women

men

asians

pacific islanders

children

people

can live

not just without killing

but in harmony

in peace with one another


he, George Floyd,

doesn't have to have died

for no reason


he sparked change


it's our job to ignite it.


I am Rowan, a 14-year-old musician, programmer, and poet. I live in Seattle, Washington, which is a fairly progressive city, but we still have challenges of racial and sexual injustice. I have played guitar since I was 6 years old. I have been learning and hearing about the BLM movement, and I realized that not doing something was just as bad as contributing, so that's why I wrote this poem.

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