(1958 - / From Tampa Florida And Still Living Near By)

Once I Was A Black Southern Woman

and as black as any southern woman
was it not the hard ships we all endured
southern wood piles
holding more than the wood
inside our souls
before even cotton had such white sunny face
they being some, one to many and yellow
always running in and out of ours.
our children even then,
being halved
forced too watch, while their momma.
on her hands and knees long pine floors
wrapped around some flag,
open in the front,
and a pale wormy flaccid being always.
always clenching her dark chocolate hands
knuckles as white snow
the south behind him
looking on and knowing their future with
him pasted firmly, into mine.
hardness always in my soul,
many were the dark bloods,
red roses, valleys filled.
pink noses once as abundant as, now
as scarce as the men, burning fields.

by James McLain

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