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Colorful Souvenirs
by Henry Clemmons
12/15/09
Not For Sale
Author requests article critique


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I’ll be in jail
Shortly
Because of my skin’s
Color.

Police are on their way
My pastor tipped me off
He was upset.

I’m waiting in a black suit
Black tie
Black shoes and socks.

Just left a gravesite
The funeral was overcast
Blackish storm clouds swirled above
Umbrellas were black
Sunglasses darker.

A young black boy was dead
Shot by another black boy
On a darkened street
In the “black” part of town.

Both boys attended my Sunday school class one summer
We bussed them in
An outreach to the less fortunate black kids.

They were smart
Funny
Liked to laugh
Cherished the bibles I gave them to carry home
To the “black” part of town.

I remember their smiles
Getting off the
Bus
And I turned and drove back
To the less “black” part of town.

After that summer
We all went back
To being …

Except they were in the “black” part of town
And I
In the less “black” part of town.

I took a trip to Ghana that autumn
Helped at a school
Brought home colorful
Souvenirs …

All the flowers at the funeral had no roots
(The ones that weren’t plastic arranged to look real)
Just clipped stems
Stuck in glass vases.

Strange
Not one whole plant
Root, stem, bloom.

The flowers were delivered
And will soon die
At the gravesite.

The police are here
I’ll be charged with arson
I burned our church bus on my way
Home.

Pastor didn’t understand.


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Member Comments
Member Date
Lesley-Anne Evans 31 Dec 2009
Publish… publish… publish. I am not saying this lightly… please publish. Your work has a message said in a unique way, and in my humble opinion, has great merit. Lesley-Anne (Clements) Evans




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