Sunday, October 25, 2015

A manifesto

By Karen Estrella

After Joshua Bennett 

 “Say it” you command
sing it

and yet
I seem to have lost my voice
I seem to have lost
The very thread
That I wrapped around my finger
So that I wouldn’t forget

That I am beautiful
That you are worthy
Of trust

The very thread
That runs through my
Story
What is my story?

Make it
You say
Take it
You say
Trust the process

You say

And yet
Trust
is a word
that sounds so trite
in my ears

I cannot even trust
What I hear
From inside my own heart

Oh, and I am deaf too
My ear drums
Have been silenced

The ramparts red glare
The bombs bursting in air
Have seemed to burst those
Drums in my ears

I cannot find myself
In the American dream
I have become a zombie

The night of the living dead
Has become my default station

My waylay
My way
stay

Maybe there are drums
That can talk to my soul
That can wake up my heart

Voodoo drums
Like those that
Frankie sang about
Do do that voodoo
That you do so well

Do something to me

Make me
Wake me
Shake me

What will it
take me
To revive

To revise
This script
I can’t seem to
stray from

I can’t seem to
Unbind myself
Undo myself
From this mistrust

This mistake
I’ve staked my heart upon

This misappropriation of funds
I have mislaid

I am spent

Too tired
I am tired
Of trying
Of living
This dream
That promised me
The pursuit of happiness

I seem only to have
Been given the pursuit
I have been hunted down
By my ghosts

I have been
Held up
By my kin folk

They sit there
With their accusing finger
Pointed
at my heart

You are not
Entitled
To an endless supply

You are not
Entitled
To the right
To speak your mind

You are not
Entitled

To a voice
That speaks American

You are not
Entitled
To spend your trust
On something
You cannot name
You cannot speak
You cannot keep
Making
Something
Out of nothing

Make it
You say
Take it
You say
Trust the process
You say

And yet
Trust
is a word
that sounds so trite
in my ears

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