march thirty one: #30poems30days – poetry inspired by pop culture – sports and racism

photo from

photo from

I  originally wrote this poem in 2006 and revised it in 2014.  It’s to interesting how this topic of the intersection of sports and racism continues to be a problem in American society juxtaposed against the importance of sports in the lives of American youth and our need for recreational activities.  Sports and athletic events has also become somewhat of a status symbol, afforded only by those with money to pay for front row seats at stadiums or who’s corporations can buy season tickets for it’s employees, leaving the everyday citizen to watch it on TV or forcing at home viewers to go broke investing in a “viewing package” of all football/basketball/baseball all the time just to stay caught up with the Jones’.  This issue is out of hand and the recent alleged racist rant by L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling only exacerbates the problem as well as opens a window into the true feelings and comfort level of many older white men in America who still own most of the land and commodities in our society.  So much to talk about, so little time….


A New Kind Of Strange Fruit     (2006, updated 2014)

instead of hanging from trees

we hang from

basketball hoops

and we sprint down a field


running and jumping

performing at tip top speed


all for a contract

that puts a price

on your back


our athletes

are treated

like servants

bouncing and throwing a ball

on a plantation

disguised as an institution

of higher education


trading our talents

for entertainment

and naming rights

on stadiums

alumni return to campus

to tailgate

and drink

and swap stories


their fortune 500 careers

and talk about

how fast that new boy

can run down the field


these so called students

are plucked from their hoods

promised big dreams

promised a life of

sex and groupies

only to be left with a life of

trying to maintain a scholarship

trying not to fall asleep in class

trying to prove

that they’re more than

a black buck


to fill a slot

on a team

that wins championships

only to encourage donors

to keep on digging

in their pockets

leaving players


why their coach

is treated like a king

and they are treated

like a commodity?


And then they get drafted

and traded

like stocks


traded and sold

to the highest bidder

to fill their pockets with some change

in order to fill their lives

with material goods

only to make their owners empires bigger


all at the expense of racial progress?


now tell me again

what is the difference

between sports

and the oppressive




we came to know as


thank you for reading march thirty one poetry

follow me on twitter: @ivywriter



This poem was based on another prompt from poet Scott Woods on Twitter.  The prompt was “Geocaching in the hood”.  I used my own interpretation of that:

Poem:  GPS for the streets

never underestimate the homeless dude

sees all, hears all

and probably knows all the shortcuts


Thank you for reading march thirty one poetry

Follow me on Twitter: @ivywriter

march thirty one: #30poems30days #poetryprompt: finding direction in the hood

march thirty one: writer’s digest, chapbook poetry challenge, prompt #6

Writer Wordart

Writer Wordart (Photo credit: MarkGregory007)

Here is my attempt to continue to play catch up with the Chapbook Poetry Challenge from Writer’s Digest. The challenge is up to Day 11. I’m still on Day 6. Wish me luck.

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 onWriter’s Digest at:


Prompt #6 comes from Walt Wojtanik. It’s a Two-for-Tuesday prompt) which is actually two prompts (it just happened to be Election Day):

  1. Write a Left Poem.
  2. Write a Right Poem.



I know my Rights!

I have to be right all of the time

even when I know I’m wrong

even when I know I’m lost the battle

to get my point across.

Even when I’ve beat you over the head

with my point

to view

my way

through my eyes

through my

somewhat squewed


I have to be right all of the time

because if I don’t

think I’m right

Who will?



GPS Haiku

What if I turn left?

Who will help me go right?

Find your direction


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 30

The 2006 State Champions of the Poetry Out Lou...

The 2006 State Champions of the Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Contest. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Well, I made it, it’s the last day of April and I have written a poem for each day. I took on the 30 poems in 30 days challenge from the National Poetry Writing Month website, and I’ve officially celebrated National Poetry Month as all poets should.  Thanks for following along and I hope you  have enjoyed the journey as much as I have! Here’s my last poem for April:

payday haiku

bone thugs said it best

people scrambling for checks

its first of the month


thank you for reading march thirty one poetry and celebrating national poetry month with me! stay tuned for my poems to be published and available soon!

follow me on twitter: @ivywriter