26

I am a member

Of a generation

Who knows what it’s like to fear

A bang in the hallway.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who hears that bang

And feels the adrenaline

Rush through our blood,

And our muscles tense

In preparation to run.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who looks at the metal detectors

In the entryway

And wonders if it’s really enough.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who knows

That it isn’t.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who watched Sandy Hook

Fade into the distant memory

Of the past.

Fade into the distant memory

Of the people.

Fade into the distant memory

Of the politicians.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who watched Sandy Hook

And did not

Could not

Forget.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who looks at our loathing teachers

And wonder hysterically

“Would the cold,

Hateful man or woman

With nothing for us

But barbed words

And sharp scowls,

Step between us and a bullet

If that’s how the cards fell?”

 

I am a member

Of a generation,

Who looked at that teacher;

And knew for certain

The answer was “no”.

 

I am a member

Of a generation,

Who looked around the classroom

And wondered

“Which one of them

Would die first?”

“Which one of them

Would shield another with their body?”

“Which one of them

Would run without pause?”

 

I am a member

Of the generation

Who tries to pick a seat

Closest to the window,

So we could run

If we needed to.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who learned to huddle

In the corner,

Under tables,

In the closet,

Before we could count to

The number of children

Who died at Sandy Hook.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who watches

As more,

And more,

And more,

Children,

Innocent

Children,

Fall under a blaze of gunfire

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who watches

The politicians

Send the families
“Hopes and prayers”,

And sends them nothing else,

While they line their pockets

With money and praise

From people who care

For little more

Than the rifles on their walls.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who watches

The Nation mourn

For a week,

And then move on,

Only to offer

More

“Hopes and prayers”

Next month,

When it happens again.

 

As though “hopes and prayers”

Would raise the fallen,

And save

The next group of children

On Death’s list.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who sees the name

Of the latest school,

And wonders

If our school

Will be next.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who sees the names

Of the latest victims

And wonders if our name,

Our friend’s name,

Our family’s name,

Will be next.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who walks into school

Everyday,

And wonders distantly

If it will be our last.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who plans for college

And wonders distantly

If we’ll even get there.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

That looks

At our younger siblings,

And knows

That they will know

To be afraid too.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

With police officers,

Who have sworn

To protect us,

That look upon a sea of

White men with machine guns,

And future's so stained

With dripping red blood,

That the names of the victims

Are unreadable,

And shoots

The black kid

With candy

Who would never

Hurt anyone.

 

I am a member

Of a generation

Who is tired

Of the fear,

Of the worry,

Of the jaded, dark laughter

That rings through our heads

When another one hits the news.

Because it’s either

Laugh or cry,

And if we cry,

We

Won’t

Stop.

 

26 died in Sandy Hook.

 

How many more coffins must we bury?

 

How many more threads must be cut?

 

How many more children must die

Before something changes?

 

Poetry Slam: 
This poem is about: 
Our world

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