Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Joseph Ross: What Can Be Said

What Can Be Said
for M. T.

What can be said
of the white cop

who spat on my Black
student in the 2am

silence beside Hwy 270?
Did the vigilant oaks

slip steel into your
blood? Did you think

the stars could not see
in the dark? Did you

imagine darkness has
no conscience, would

not speak up?

And what of my student,
this young man

lying on the ground
behind a car, trembling

amid the 2am choir of 
seizure and panic?

That his shivering
asthma scared you so

much you couldn’t breathe?
Bitch the only word

to dance off your tongue?
Spit the only language

you could speak?

Joseph Ross is the author of two books of poetry: Gospel of Dust (2013) and Meeting Bone Man (2012). He teaches English and Creative Writing at Gonzaga College High School in Washington, D.C. and writes regularly at Joseph Ross.net

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