Friday, November 22, 2013


Poem of the Week:   
Derrick Weston Brown   



for Sunil Tripathi of Brown University, named a suspect in the April Boston Marathon Bombing by Reddit although he had been missing since mid-March. His body was found nearly two weeks later. And for Salah Eddin Barhoum, an unnamed "Saudi Man," and "Brown Running Man," and all those who fit a description. 

Your brown skin is not a bomb.
Your brown skin does not mean bomb.
Though they doctor pictures.
Though they cry cowards.
Though drones may have your name on rolodex.
Though they cry why do they hate us so, with the ball of.....their foot on your neck.
Though they stop and frisk.
Though they shun background checks.
Though they throw stones and hide their hands.
Though they stroke gun butts.
Though they fondle sleek barrels in their sleep.
Though they run their hands through shotgun shells loose grain. 
Though their journalism is pale and piss colored.
Though they peer through their own monstrous veil.
Though they forget home grown rotted roots.
Though they pull weeds and crush seeds in other's gardens.
Though they flash your photos with reckless intent.
Though they posse up.
Though they scramble like keystone cops.
Though they shoot first.
Though they shoot first.
Your brown skin is not a bomb.
Your brown skin does not mean bomb.
Your breath is good mornings.
Your eyes are promises backed by
prayers uttered from the backs of throats
of those who love first and question later.
Your brown skin is a country

-Derrick Weston Brown

Used by permission.     

Derrick Weston Brown holds an MFA in Creative Writing from American University. He is the founding Poet-In-Residence of Busboys and Poets. He also teaches Creative Writing to High school and Middle school students in D.C. He is a native of Charlotte, North Carolina and resides in Mount Rainier, Maryland.  He was the 2012-2013 Writer-In-Residence of Howard County. His work has been published in such journals as, WarplandMythiumThe Drunken BoatTidal Basin ReviewLittle Patuxent Review and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2012. His first full length collection of poetry,  Wisdom Teeth, was released in 2011 on Busboys and Poets Press/ PM Press.  

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1 comment:

Susan said...

Powerful poem, a chant that gets louder and more fierce as it grows until it finally settles in an unblemished beautiful and free "good morning." Brown and full of love and prayer. Thank you.