September 5, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

AFP photo



Ben White




Stand Up Just A Little



The policeman

Wasn’t sure where he was –

Inside the house or outside on the street –

Or what he heard –

Party noise or gun fire –

Or what he saw –

A car driving away or headed towards his partner –

But he did run after the teenagers

Who were driving from the party,

And he did pop off

Five blind rounds from an AR-15,


And a 15-year-old kid was killed –

A Black kid from Texas –

Another Black kid in America


Putting fear and stress

On a White policeman

With an anxious trigger finger

Ready to protect America

From her own communities –


But this time,

Though it will never bring

Jordan Edwards

Back to life, liberty or his personal pursuits,

After it took 13 hours over two days

To find Officer Roy Oliver

Innocent of aggravated assault –

It was okay to fire his weapon into the car –

The jury found the officer guilty –

Say it again,


Of murder –

It was not okay to kill anyone in the car he was shooting into –


So justice

Took one small, small step

Back towards civility’s middle,

And those defending

The Constitution by kneeling

Can stand up

Just a little.






Ben White

Author of the books, Buddha Bastinado Blues and The Kill Gene, Ben White thought he was a poet, only to find out he is not a poet at all. He is a witness. What he writes is testimony.

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