(February/'47 / Connecticut, USA)

In The Celebration Of Black History Month

Why are you doing that?

'In the celebration of Black History Month.
This is the only time of the year,
We can express our heartfelt gratitude.
AND,
Do it with a full blown dignity, pride...
And an identity expressing our self esteem.'

I don't get it.

'A group of us have decided,
To re-enact those days when we...
Our people,
Were captive slaves...
And kept in physical bondage.'

So...
You are polishing shackles and chains?
To attach to yourselves'
Help me understand this.
Please.

'Well...
It is our way of showing,
We are appreciative...
For all that our ancestors have done for us.'

And...
Why the wearing of tuxedos?

'We've invited some very influential people,
To impress them with the advancements we've made.
Proving our completed togetherness,
As we struggle for freedom and true equality.
A picture paints a thousand words.'

You don't mind if I don't attend do you?

'I am not surprised by that at all.
Everytime there is a call for unity...
You find some excuse not to participate.
And frankly,
Your absence may be for us attending this event...
A blessing.
Your sermons about us being ignorant,
Is a bit tired and outdated.
It's brothers like you...
That keeps putting a blemish on our efforts.'

You have no idea,
Just how outdated you make me feel.
And...
You will not have to worry about me,
Putting a single blemish on your efforts.

'That's a relief.'

by Lawrence S. Pertillar

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