A War Worth Fighting

Mon, 07/18/2016 - 16:34 -- Khalia

A man driving down the road

Listening to the radio

Chilling with his girls;  his daughter and wife.

His daughter sat in the back;

swaying her warm black curly hair to the music

His wife bopped her head rhythmically;

Laughing their silly daughter

This was his dream when he was a little boy.

The same dream we all have when we were younger

The dream of having the perfect wife, kid, house, and car.

Isn’t that why we played house when we were young?

To live this dream we couldn’t yet live

He believes that playing house with his neighbors, Aliyah and Denise prepared him for the family life and,

Frankly made him a better father.

All of a sudden, everything stops

The hum of the music from the radio quiets to a whistle

The laughter of his two beautiful ladies silences

His heartbeat seems to freeze in time and speeds up again

When he sees a flash of lights behind him

Causing him to widen his eyes

The sound of the siren rings in his ears and

Slithers throughout his body

His breathing quickens for a brief moment

His daughter, turns toward him with tears in her eyes.

It seemed like a good idea at the time to show her the news

To bring her to light of the world she is living in

He realized doing so made her less ignorant but

Made her more susceptible to the emotions of misery

And the causes the hope in her tiny, little, childlike brain to disintegrate

Her hope will instead be replaced with fear and paranoia.

It was probably better to keep her out of the loop as

Ignorance is Bliss

Or is it?

He stared at her eyes and took a deep breath.

Putting on his turning signal, he slightly turned the wheel to his right.

At least, if he does this, it will be one less thing to be in trouble for.

He’s on the side of the road now.

The side where a bunch of broken, brown bodies laid breathless.

He rolled down the window.

The handcuffs on the officer's belt clanked on his belt as he walked closer to the vehicle

The officer stopped in front of the window.

The officer’s fair skin seem to have shone in the orange streetlight.

The officer crossed his arms across his chest.

“Do you know how fast you were going?”

The driver gulped, and cautiously spoke

“Yes, sir. I was following the speed limit; 65 miles per hour.”

He made sure the officer could see his hands

“Are you sure ‘bout that?” the officer asked.

The driver nodded. Suddenly, the officer’s arms dropped to his sides.

The driver forgot the unwritten constitution of traffic stops.

  1. Talk slowly and calmly

  2. Make eye contact

  3. Make sure all hand motions are noticeable


He finds it funny that there is such a constitution. He chuckled under his breath.

“Is there something funny?” the officer asked.

“No sir,”

“”OK. License and registration” the officer commanded.


He digged through his jacket for his wallet

He couldn’t find it in the sea of receipts and loose change.

He looked in his other jacket pocket and felt something lumpy.

He took it out quite cautiously; his hands shaking from nervously.

He looked down at the brown leather wallet; caked in rips and tears.

He called them scars as each rip told a story. For instance,

The huge tear at the top left corner was when his

Daughter tried to tear the leather off to make a purse for her barbie dolls.

Of course, he was mad at her but then she showed him puppy dog eyes and he forgave her

This was the day he knew this little girl was talented and was going to make it

The anticipation of seeing his little princess grow up to be a beautiful queen of some handsome prince made his eyes water

He looked up the officer.

The officer;s right hand was on his hip, right near his gun.

The driver opened his wallet and quickly took out the license and registration.

He handed it to the officer

The officer yanked it out of his hands

The officer’s eyes scanned through the license.

“Get out of the car”

The driver was shook by the aggressive nature of the cop’s voice

He slowly reached for the handle and opened the door.

He stood up and walked to the trunk of the car.

The cop followed suit.

“Open the trunk” the cop demanded.

It seems as though the cop is giving a lot of orders.

Seems like he is power hungry

Like he still sees the driver’s slavery scars.

“May I ask why officer?” the driver asked.

The cop inched up to his face and said,

“Because I said so,”

Suddenly, the cop’s partner came out of the squad car. He looked to be about 26 years old,

“Is there a problem here?”

“I got it,” the og cop reassured.

The driver stood there with the two cops standing over him.

He took out his spare key.

His hands shaking, he opened the trunk

The trunk contained two suitcases and one pink Doc mcstuffins book bag

As they had just came from a two-day church banquet

The original cop searched the two black suitcases.

The young cop observed him.

He then searched his daughter’s bookbag

He looked into the car to see his daughter watching him.

“Umm...sorry officer but can you be careful with that? It’s my daughter’s.” He politely requested.

The cop looked up at the daughter and sucked his teeth

He slowly opened the book bag as a way of challenging the driver’s request

He looked through it and found his baby girl’s locket

He held it up and dropped it on the ground.

He felt the anger start to bubble up like oatmeal in a pot.

The driver saw the partner gripping his gun and pointing it at the back of his head

The driver’s muscles stiffened and he froze in place.

The original cop smirked as he lifted up his leg

A chill ran up and down the driver’s spine as sweat bullets started to pour down his face

The original cop stomped down on the locket and the driver

Lifted his arm to try and save it

However, 5 loud gunshots rang out of the partner’s gun

The driver dropped to the ground and his wife ran outside the car.

She saw the body and the blood flowing from the back of his head

She wailed out a huge cry

Her daughter was behind her, peeking from the side of her mother’s body.

For the driver, all he felt was warmth on this cold day as his blood ran rapid;

Sweeping away the leftovers of the locket

With the pieces a crumpled picture of his father who died from a fatal gunshot to the head

His father was a war hero.

This man was not in a war or

At least not one he purposely drafted in

He was killed in a war that all black people;

Specifically black men, are drafted in once they are born.

Feasibly, you can say he, too was a war hero as he

Credited the black race and the movement towards equality in the justice system.

However, this war hero shouldn’t and wouldn’t have died if we were united

If we stuck together like brick, perhaps we could’ve made a brick wall

Which would’ve made it harder to watch us fall.

Poetry Slam: 


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