How Does it Taste?

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

I wonder how “Politics don’t affect me” tastes in your mouth

When in my mouth I know the taste of anxiety and keys in my fist

As I walk home in the dark on campus,

Knowing that my rapist and potential murderer

Wouldn’t even be expelled


I wonder how “It doesn’t affect me” sits on your tongue

While I sit and wonder if today will be the day

I’m fired, kicked out of my home, harassed,

Beated, denied treatment and die

Because it’s legal to deny me due to who I love


I wonder how “it’s just how I was raised” passes your lips

An excuse to avoid getting your hands dirty

To avoid getting involved

To avoid change

When my hands are constantly covering my drink

Or texting my friend to make sure she got home safe


I hear you say “We survived blank president, we’ll survive this one”

And I think of how many died from AIDS,

Or Hurricane Katrina, or Segregation, or Interment,

And names flash on the news of people who haven’t survived this one

And wonder how many lives lost is enough for you to see that surviving

Shouldn’t be something we have to do


You say “I just don’t bother” and I hear the gunshot

That killed an innocent man in his own home

After someone broke in and decided HE didn’t belong there

Knowing and not knowing at the same time

 How much worse it must be 

For someone whose skin isn’t the “Right” shade like mine is


Because when we fight hand in hand for equality

We try to bend to your rules so that you listen.

We riot and you say “not like that”

We march and you say “not like that” 

We kneel and you say “not like that”

When what you really mean 



“I don’t see what the fuss is about” is cotton in your ears

As ignorance and privilege shroud around you

And muffle the sound of gunshots in the streets

And the screams of mothers who’ve just been told

Their babies aren’t coming home from school


You say “agree to disagree” 

And I hear the screams of a little girl kept in a cage, alone, away from everyone who loves her

And all of a sudden “Never Again” Is now.

Right now.


I hope when you say “I just don’t care about politics”

That it tastes like ashes in your mouth

As you blow out the last dying embers of democracy with your apathy

Submitted: October 09, 2020

© Copyright 2021 Drautumn123. All rights reserved.

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