Night of the Uprising

there was free milk and bread
for the homeless.
free nap mats
to replace
their cardboard mattresses.
there was free fruit
fish, beans and rice
so the ghetto can eat good tonight.
fine sofas
and free love seats
for the recently married.
free shoes, free sweaters
and free socks
for all the poor kids
on our block.
after all these years
of being in need
we didn’t mind
bleeding for liberation.
it was our duty.
we didn’t mind at all.

• This poem is from Lamont Lilly’s forthcoming debut Honor in the Ghetto (Fall 2016).

Lamont Lilly is an independent journalist, Black radical activist, poet and community organizer based in Durham, North Carolina. In 2016, he was the Workers World Party U.S. vice-presidential candidate. Follow him on Twitter @LamontLilly Read other articles by Lamont.