When a black man walks

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You ever see a black man walk?

It's like rythm and meter got off the page and decided to move and glide with spirit.

You ever seen a black man walk in a room marring cold style like he tap dancing,

"I'm here!"

In those steps are messages and you have to listen carefully.

"They trying to kill me.

Stop, Search and Frisk me"

There are prayers in a black man's walk.

"Don't let them shoot me down where I'm standing,

Don't let the white chalk line spy me,

Don't let me die in the streets like an animal.

I'm a man! I swear I'm a man!"

When a black man walks, a whole generation lives to see another day,

another sunrise,

another mouth to feed,

another seed,

another sacrifice saved,

another poem,

another hungry burning cross,

another mother breathe in her son's ear, more easy, more quiet.

Keep your head down boy it don't matter if you're sixteen or sixty.

When a black man walks, he is always hunting,

he's always animal.

He is always standing out like a living corpse,

he smells like a KKK appetiser,

nuggets of his own flesh,

dipped in his own blood!

Oooooo weeeeee!!!!

When a black man walks,

he often finds white women walking closely behind him.

But you can't blame a white sister for liking the way a black man walks,

She understands some things.

And is cool with the fact that her baby would have nappy hair even if she would not know how to comb it.

When a black man walks,

Wait for it.

Listen to the orchestra playing beneath his feet.

Pay attention to the vibrations when he walks into a room.

See how many faces change to fear with the presence of a black man.

See how many women hold their purses so tight till their fingers grow numb.

See how many men hide their eyes hoping the darkness will go away.

Maybe choke itself to death.

"That ugly two third human being!"

"That next to nothing black dot!"

"That useless prison black spot!"

When a black man walks,

every day he is like Jesus. Paranoid of crucifixion.

Every day he is like Trey Von knowing his hoodie had nothing to do with his last breath.

If only bullets could kill racism, poverty and atromism slavery,

You pay attention when a black man walks,

you listen when a black man walks

his feet got a mind of their own,

a compass,

a homing device.

Four hundred years of directons.

Find your way home safely!

Don't let Jim Crow lose your soul

Don't let gentrification loose your memory!

Don't let police brutality castrate you!

Do what your mama said do!


When their feet are already covered in blood!

Do what your mama said do


When a black man walks....He ain't got time to walk!

Death is always like black men are the easiest to find.

They are the strongest but the most fragile.

They are the calm and the storm.

They die like they expect to.

When a black man walks, think of it as a masterpiece.

A beautiful song that you may only hear once.

Cherish it.

You may never hear it again.

Neiel Israel.

Truth About Poetry. (Ongoing)Where stories live. Discover now