Inconvenient Black bodies
by Eva Yaa Asantewaa
Our blood runs red through inconvenient bodies
that mattered when we were profitable chattel
sold, bought, traded like cattle.
We mattered when raped, forced to birth property.
We mattered when building the white man’s nation
from his soil to the skies.
We mattered when our blood ran red in southeast asia,
when it was our blood--not the white man’s,
back in his comfortable home.
We mattered when our brains, our creativity built industries.
We mattered when our own money built white wealth.
We mattered when our ballots built white power.
We build it still, which is how we manage to matter.
But we are inconvenient people,
troublesome bodies, bodies in the way of progress.
Mouths to feed.
Mouths crying, mouths questioning.
Mouths telling secrets.
bodies taking up space,
holding down space desired by others.
Holding stories never meant to be heard.
Resisting names we did not and
do not choose.
Resisting definition by others.
So, we are
bodies in handcuffs.
in prisons, in the crosshairs,
at the crossroads,
under the knee
that snuffs out breath as we
make one last cry to ancestors:
gather us, please; please receive
our inconvenient spirits.
derek chauvin confidently pressed his knee
against george floyd's black neck
for nearly nine minutes, each second
precisely measured out with deadly power,
a procedure well-practiced, one might say,
meticulous in its execution,
effective in its dispatch
of one more Black
and inconvenient body.
(c)2020, Eva Yaa Asantewaa
DISCLAIMER: In addition to my work on InfiniteBody, I serve, at Gibney, as Senior Director of Artist Development and Curation and Editorial Director. The postings on this site are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views, strategies or opinions of Gibney.
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