Truth Thomas


There Are Black Lives Matter Signs


growing in yards by Range Rover driveways
in the District of Segregation — Washington,
Ward 3 — where grounds are kept with scalpels

and melanin is mostly apron-tied to Whole Foods
Market aisles. “Damn if I know how I got here,”
one sign calls to me to say. I am passing on

a Pandemic Freedom Ride — newly sprung
from my quarantine cage. And I want to brake
pad my rotors for this brother, hit them hard to

halt, until they smoke and smell of burning hair,
have a 2020 summit with my social foliage fam —
on a Sunday, in the summer, on a ‘Rona raging

afternoon, as my son is a pacifier drooling,
and my wife eyes Pink Drift Roses she is
itching to snip. But how do you tell

a placard that it’s stolen? Or that
the soil where it is tokened was
never meant for its seeds?

How do you tell
your child?



Truth Thomas is a singer-songwriter and poet born in Knoxville, Tennessee, and raised in Washington, D.C. (the Capitol recording artist formerly known as Glenn Edward Thomas). His collections include: Party of Black, A Day of Presence, Bottle of Life, and the NAACP Image Award-winning Speak Water. The “Skinny” poetry form is credited to Thomas’s creation. A former writer-in-residence for the Howard County Poetry and Literature Society (HoCoPoLitSo), his poems have appeared in over 150 publications, including The 100 Best African American Poems (edited by Nikki Giovanni).

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