Last night fire swept through the streets
Climbed the walls,
The rugs racism has been swept under,
I am white,
And I am guilty.
Of not being brave enough
To sit down with a black mother
Look her in the eye
“What does it feel like?”
To be afraid for your babies
Your beautiful children, eyes full of love.
I am a coward,
Because I was afraid of the heaviness
Of letting that pain into my space.
My privilege is the freedom
To acknowledge oppression
Yet decide when I want to have the conversation.
Choosing whether to avoid the discomfort.
Choosing at all.
Maybe change begins
When suffering is so vast
It no longer fits inside human bodies.
When the ugly silence of fear
Is so loud, we can no longer deny it.
And when my heart aches as I look at you
Knowing that your truth will knock me down,
Will rattle my soul,
I will acknowledge all that I can never know,
And I will ask you.
“How does it feel?”