Amerikkka Was Built on Busting Up Families…

I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13, to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained the government for his purposes.
— Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, III, Human Impersonator

Bottom of the boat
rocking, rolling, thrashing
Violently— the quaking black
hole now her life. She had
No idea where she was
on the awful ocean,
Traveling shackled for
thousands of miles;
belly beginning to bulge
with the baby of her rum-
reeking rapist and his
“Zero Tolerance” policy

She would bore four more for
a ‘Master,’ who’d sell her
to the West Virginian wanting
her in the worst way—
Ripping picaninnies from
nursing breasts to become
bucks and wenches, working
fields and lusts of slavers—“that
was then,” they say, “this is now:”

“Mama, Mama, Papa, Papa, Mama, Papa…”
tears of toddlers flooding searing shrieks,
Torturous cacophony; the satanic symphony,
counterpoint to cool BOP, ICE acronyms—
Amerikkka’s great again—
At separating children from parents;
At spinning swastikas into scripture…
Once upon a time, mint julep-sipping,
Bullwhip-wielding christians in castles whitewashed by
Black labor, worked children and parents to death—
“And everyone lived happily ever after…”

Raymond Nat Turner is a NYC poet privileged to have read at the Harriet Tubman Centennial Symposium. He is Artistic Director of the stalwart JazzPoetry Ensemble UpSurge and has appeared at numerous festivals and venues including the Monterey Jazz Festival and Panafest in Ghana West Africa. He currently is Poet-in-Residence at Black Agenda Report. Turner has opened for such people as James Baldwin, People’s Advocate Cynthia McKinney, radical sportswriter Dave Zirin and CA Congresswoman Barbara Lee following her lone vote against attacking Afghanistan. He is Co-Chair of the NY Chapter National Writers Union (NWU). Read other articles by Raymond Nat, or visit Raymond Nat's website.