Hope 2020

I tried to write about hope
But wasn’t sure I had the audacity
The pandemic took a toll
And our last president was a fascist
Said he did more for Christianity
Than Jesus
And between the BLM protest and right wing hatred we just
Stayed inside and tried to live
Contemplating if loans would be forgiven
To provide a little relief
We were safe at home but had to march in the streets
To beats
Of Black Lives Matter
See I was flattered
To be part of the Healthcare Hero’s
Until I start telling the truth and the death toll added zeros
And zeros
Until the number reached 100000
And still people believed it was a hoax
And wouldn’t wear masks in public places
The deck was stacked against us and the government held
But they underbid as the death toll continued to rise
But as the number grew there were fewer tears from eyes
Of the privileged
Because big business needed that money
Propaganda had normal people acting funny
Yet still I dared to hope
Until I couldn't breathe as
George Floyd choked and his killer walked the streets free
We're going back into summer
But instead of George Floyd the name we will march to is
Daunte Wright
And we again will wear our masks as we continue to fight
Systems of oppression
The National Guards were called and wore bullet proof vest
When we said Black Lives Matter
But were nowhere to be seen when the right wing
Unhinged the government’s seat of power
And the hours
Continued to tick on
525600 deaths but rent wasn’t on
But Nurses were on
The verge of a mental break down every day
Saving lives of the people who claimed don’t tread on me
And yet I say I’m going to write about hope
As a black woman in America it’s impossible not to choke
On the repetitious contradictions
Vaccines vs quarantine things while the seams are bursting
On the national debt
“Make 600 dollars enough” because it’s all you gone get
As you try to survive this crisis
Going hungry while giving the nation its slice is
Your patriotic duty
I’m a poet and I know it sounds looney
That I can’t write about hope
2020 had me riding a high worse than dope
And when I came down it was comparative to death
Knowing that nothing would change
So I inhale and deep breath
And continue to think about hope

Copyright © 2022 by Ashanti Files. Used with permission of the author.