not nearly enough to cleanse the stench, funk
grime and crime within the walls of an estate corrupt
not enough to baptize a new beginning or
dissolve evil embedded in historical detail

shadows of slaveholders, hustlers, con men, thieves
an occasional preacher
walk these halls, illness seeps from her pores
this residential body proclaimed the peoples house
paint her red

red for the blood of victims carried in the womb of hypocrisy
for the burden of babies bathed in a trail of tears
red for the wounds of discovery
rape of a land, hanging trees

two hundred forty four years
divided by artistic speech, broken promises
high crimes, less misdemeanors
speak her name for we will not forget
red, brown, black lives matter

keep her on your tongue, peel her from your skin
soak her in an ocean of tea tree oil
burn forests of sage into your consciousness
chant nam myoho renge kyo
for the healing to begin

F. Geoffrey Johnson
Latest posts by F. Geoffrey Johnson (see all)