Today the pedestals are empty

Today the statues float in rivers
and finally the citadels of false reverence are beginning to fall

What does it say about us
that we are obsessed with protecting the statues of the long-dead,
that we refuse to forget the false righteousness of lost violence, the so-called honor in dying for
evil, that we are obsessed with forgetting the blood that came sweating from the whip and spilled
from the hanging corpses of martyrs and the blood that dried in Tennessee grass from dead
immigrant soldiers?

What does it say about us
that our nation’s capital is surrounded by roads named after traitors, named after traitors to
American morality who sold flesh as if it were currency and lives as if they were commodities,
named after feudalists who claimed false moral supremacy in enslavement,
who wrote hateful diatribes to the supremacy of the white man as slaves built the White House from solid white marble?

What does it say about us, America
that there are still schools named after enslavers, still schools named after killers,
still plinths that memorialize the dead dynasties of glorified brutality, that there are still
plantation graveyards and prison labor camps
that we turn into antebellum yurts of civilization
in our distorted histories,
that there are flags that still wave the old symbols of hatred in breezes
one hundred and fifty years new?

Today the pedestals are empty and finally the plaques have been rewritten in paint


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here