march thirty one: #TrayvonMartin, One Year Later

Retro Post:  On this day, February 26, 2012, one year later, Trayvon Martin, a teenager, was shot and killed by Wanna Be Cop, George Zimmerman.  Here I share my post from last year and my special poem I wrote in memory of #TrayvonMartin.

Written on March 16, 2012:

I just realized that I haven’t been affected by a teenager’s death and I haven’t felt compelled to write about one specific young person’s death since high school, when a young girl in Cleveland named Diah Harris was killed by her sister back in the early 90s. There was just something about that case that haunted me, bothered me, made me feel like I had to be connected to her in some way, even though I had never met her. I feel the same way about Trayvon Martin. I write this poem today in recognition of the terrible injustice that took place in Sanford, Florida on February 26, 2012 when a vivacious young African American boy, Trayvon Martin, was shot down in a claim of self defense.  How shameful it is that once again, America is gripped by the untimely death of another child who was an innocent bystander and who’s death quite possibly, may go away without being avenged by our criminal justice system.  

Trayvon Martin Protest - Sanford

 

I also felt compelled to write this poem after viewing this haunting photo of Trayvon which, to me, speaks volumes about the innocence of our youth in America and how we should 

value and love all of them, and not just a chosen few.  His face reminds me of the little boys I grew up with, my cousins, my friends children and all of the little Black boys I see walking around everyday. I hope that you are as appalled and outraged as I, and others across the globe are, and I hope that you will never forget his face.

A Poem For Trayvon by Kellea Tibbs

in his eyes, you can see every kid in America

you can see his hopes, his dreams, his wishes

you can see him playing with other kids his age

shooting hoops and having fun

how unfortunate

to be taken away so soon

he’s our child

he’s America’s child

not just another black child

but his untimely demise

represents us all

and if you love everything

about being an American

all of the rights

and privileges

even the option to walk down the street

free and clear of harm

or the notion that

you  might be shot down senselessly

then you WILL cry out

you SHOULD cry out

you should cry

for this beautiful child

another gone too soon

who will speak for Trayvon

who will speak for all of the parents

all of the grandparents, aunts, uncles

all of the sisters, all of the brothers

all of the cousins, all of the classmates

all of the teachers, all of the neighbors

who will miss him

we must speak up

even those of us

who didn’t even know him

but know him in our hearts

who love him

despite never meeting him

rest in peace

beautiful

thank you for reading march thirty one poetry 

follow me on twitter: @ivywriter

 

march thirty one: writers digest chapbook poetry challenge, prompt #4

English: Skin color distribution around the wo...

English: Skin color distribution around the world, data for native populations collected by R. Biasutti prior to 1940 Italiano: Distribuzione del colore della pelle di tutto il mondo, i dati raccolti per le popolazioni native di R. Biasutti prima del 1940 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For the month of November, the challenge is to write apoem-a-day andsubmit your finished work for a Chapbook Challenge.

Find out the daily Chapbook Challenge prompts by visiting Poetic Asides written by Robert Lee Brewer on Writer’s Digest at:

http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/poetic-asides/2012-november-pad-chapbook-challenge

Prompt #4 from Marie Ellen Good:  Take the phrase “Just Beneath (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then write the poem.  Possible titles include “Just Beneath My Feet,” “Just Beneath This City,” or “Just Beneath the Surface.”

MY POEM:

Just Beneath My Skin

just beneath my skin

what you can’t see

is my heart

blood pumping through my veins

giving me life

my bones

holding up my frame

guiding me through

the hustle and bustle

of busy schedules

what you don’t see

is the intellect

underneath my skin tone

beyond my hue

the dark skin

that doesn’t allow you to

see the human

the woman

the citizen

who wants

the opportunities from life

that historians have defined as

life, liberty, and happiness

but because

scienc doesn’t allow you

to see underneath my skin

you only see what’s at sea level

somehow society that allows you to

assign derogatory names

to people you don’t know

for whom you’ve willingly overturned

years of civil rights

violated biblical courtesies

so that in the name of God

you have been allowed to treat me

like  the slave

that in your mind

was never allowed to be free

and in your mind

Lincoln never signed that declaration

giving me

the same assignment  as you

to call America home

yet, underneath my skin

you will never know

what it feels like

to be treated

as second class

not even the mail

gets demoted like this

 

c) Kellea Tibbs and march thirty one, 2012. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of original march thirty one material without express and written permission from the author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. 

march thirty one: national poetry month – 30 poems in 30 days, April 11

Trayvon Martin - Million Hoodies March 2012 020

Trayvon Martin - Million Hoodies March 2012 020 (Photo credit: calvinfleming)

a haiku hymn for social justice

in light of the announcement of the final arrest of George Zimmerman, charged with 2nd degree murder for the senseless death of 17-year old Trayvon Martin, this poem is dedicated to justice.

justice is for us

keep on praying and waiting

we shall not be moved

thank you for reading march thirty one poetry

follow me on twitter: @ivywriter

march thirty one: April is National Poetry Month – “30 Poems In 30 Days” Challenge – April 2

Trayvon Martin Protest - Sanford

Trayvon Martin Protest - Sanford (Photo credit: werthmedia)

I have to say two things to preface this post: 1) I almost forgot about the National Poetry Writing Month Challenge – 30 Poems in 30 Days so I missed April 1 and I guess April 2 serves as my first day and 2) I thought it befitting to repost this poem I wrote weeks ago about #TrayvonMartin, considering there hasn’t been an arrest yet; we definitely need to keep him in our consciousness.  So here is my attempt to keep up with the challenge. If you wish to join in, visit http://www.napowrimo.net/ for more details. Please comment and share!

A Poem For Trayvon by Kellea Tibbs

in his eyes, you can see every kid in America

you can see his hopes, his dreams, his wishes

you can see him playing with other kids his age

shooting hoops and having fun

how unfortunate

to be taken away so soon

he’s our child

he’s America’s child

not just another black child

but his untimely demise

represents us all

and if you love everything

about being an American

all of the rights

and privileges

even the option to walk down the street

free and clear of harm

or the notion that

you  might be shot down senselessly

then you WILL cry out

you SHOULD cry out

you should cry

for this beautiful child

another gone too soon

who will speak for Trayvon

who will speak for all of the parents

all of the grandparents, aunts, uncles

all of the sisters, all of the brothers

all of the cousins, all of the classmates

all of the teachers, all of the neighbors

who will miss him

we must speak up

even those of us

who didn’t even know him

but know him in our hearts

who love him

despite never meeting him

rest in peace

beautiful

c) 2012 march thirty one poetry

 follow me on twitter: @ivywriter

march thirty one: The Anthology For Justice Project – Join The Movement #PoetsUnite

#TrayvonMartin The Anthology For Justice Project

In honor of #TrayvonMartin and the fight to bring his killer, a vigilante Neighborhood Watch Captain gone rogue named #GeorgeZimmerman to justice, I’m asking that anyone who considers him or herself a poet, spoken word artist, etc. to share your poetry with me. And not just any poetry, I want to you to send me any piece (new or old), haiku, free verse, whatever, that is originally written by you, that speaks to the idea of JUSTICE or in this case, injustice in America.

I’m an activist at heart and while I don’t have the option to march across campus for various issues as I did in my Kent State undergrad days of the 1990s, I have an idea that will let me put my grassroots activism juices to work. Because I probably won’t be able to attend any of the rallies in Florida (as I imagine many of you won’t be able to either), I feel compelled, as I hope you do, to #BeActive and show your support to Trayvon’s family and all of the other youth all over the world.  I strongly encourage you to participate in The Anthology For Justice Project.   Even if we can’t be present in Florida, I think that we can still be empowered and continue to raise our voices through the power of our creative writing.

If you wish to JOIN THE MOVEMENT, I want to start it off with individual poems posted on my blog first, and hopefully we can move to a submission of You Tube spoken word videos, depending on how far this goes.  Please send your ORIGINAL (I emphasize original) written work to me in one of four (4) ways: 1) email me at ivywriter@live.com , 2) Leave a comment on this blog post – a link to your work, a poem, etc.  3) Tweet me a link of your work (if it’s already on a blog or website) to my Twitter (@ivywriter), or 4)  just tweet a haiku, with the suggested hashtags.  If you choose to tweet your poem or a link to your poem to me, please use all or a combination of the following hashtags: #PoetsUnite,  #AnthologyForJustice,  and #BeActive (try to use at least one of them).   Remember, this is an experiment for justice so please share and spread it to as many poets that you know so that we can let the State of Florida and the U.S. Justice system know that we demand equal treatment for all victims of violent crime.

And P.S. Let’s please make sure we teach our kids what “Neighborhood Watch” really means. It means looking out for your neighbors and friends, being a little nosey, and calling 911. That’s It!  It doesn’t mean being a vigilante and shooting because you feel like it. Justice for #TrayvonMartin

#PoetsUnite #AnthologyForJustice #BeActive

Thank you and I look forward to hearing from all of my fellow poets!

Kellea

editor, march thirty one poetry

and The Anthology For Justice Project

follow me on twitter: @ivywriter

march thirty one: poetry for justice- In Recognition of #TrayvonMartin Blog-In Day

I just realized that I haven’t been affected by a teenager’s death and I haven’t felt compelled to write about one specific young person’s death since high school, when a young girl in Cleveland named Diah Harris was killed by her sister back in the early 90s. There was just something about that case that haunted me, bothered me, made me feel like I had to be connected to her in some way, even though I had never met her. I feel the same way about Trayvon Martin. I write this poem today in recognition of the terrible injustice that took place in Sanford, Florida on February 26, 2012 when a vivacious young African American boy, Trayvon Martin, was shot down in a claim of self defense.  How shameful it is that once again, America is gripped by the untimely death of another child who was an innocent bystander and who’s death quite possibly, may go away without being avenged by our criminal justice system.  

I also felt compelled to write this poem after viewing this haunting photo of Trayvon which, to me, speaks volumes about the innocence of our youth in America and how we should

Trayvon Martin, Gone Too Soon!

value and love all of them, and not just a chosen few.  His face reminds me of the little boys I grew up with, my cousins, my friends children and all of the little Black boys I see walking around everyday. I hope that you are as appalled and outraged as I, and others across the globe are, and I hope that you will never forget his face.

A Poem For Trayvon by Kellea Tibbs

in his eyes, you can see every kid in America

you can see his hopes, his dreams, his wishes

you can see him playing with other kids his age

shooting hoops and having fun

how unfortunate

to be taken away so soon

he’s our child

he’s America’s child

not just another black child

but his untimely demise

represents us all

and if you love everything

about being an American

all of the rights

and privileges

even the option to walk down the street

free and clear of harm

or the notion that

you  might be shot down senselessly

then you WILL cry out

you SHOULD cry out

you should cry

for this beautiful child

another gone too soon

who will speak for Trayvon

who will speak for all of the parents

all of the grandparents, aunts, uncles

all of the sisters, all of the brothers

all of the cousins, all of the classmates

all of the teachers, all of the neighbors

who will miss him

we must speak up

even those of us

who didn’t even know him

but know him in our hearts

who love him

despite never meeting him

rest in peace

beautiful

 follow me on twitter: @ivywriter