I Speak

Issue sevenIssue Seven Poetry

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By Chad Norman,

Remembering Kenneth Patchen, but written for those war and politics uproot.


I speak

because I can

because I can use my voice

to support your choice to move.


I speak

because I must

because I must be a man

who holds out a hand & smiles.


I speak

because I will

because I will move away from

the voices against you joining us.


I speak

because I empty

because I empty my being

of a past riddled with subtle racism.



I speak

because I fill

because I fill my heart easily

with a protest many sadly turn into a parade.


I speak

because I walk

because I walk on the same planet

now the new home your babies sleep in.


I speak

because I see

because I see through eyes

unfiltered by any blinded minds.


I speak

because I know

because I know there’s nothing naive

about the handshake I long to perform,

I long to perform when the future provides

your seemingly settled trembling grasp.