next time hold that boy’s hand
before you shot him,
did you ask him if he’d ever been baptized?
did you know that boy aint ever been baptized?
next sunday, he promised his grandmother that he was going to get baptized
he told her he’d started walking by faith but you took that boy’s sight
you kidnapped that boy’s vision
and ransomed it from his eyes
smothered his fight
do you know how hard his mother had to fight
to get him into college
fighting to keep her Black son alive
that boy’s breath be scared to leave his body
that boy’s eyes be seeing everyone but God in the dark
they aint even killing us in the dark anymore
did you tell him that God’s eyes be watching men dressing up as him,
with their guns in substitution for thunderbolts and communion robes that are law enforcement blue
did you tell that boy his body would be broken in two,
did you tell him that his body would be broken into
did you tell him that your grandfathers killed his grandfathers too?
please, did you at least give him time to ask God for forgiveness?
did you allow him to forget about hating you?
the last face he saw was yours, mr. officer,
did you give him the courtesy of holding his hand and telling him it was going to be alright even though it wasn’t
even if you were scared his flesh would skid-mark guilt upon you
before you claim things and people that are not yours
at least unfold their names over your tongue and swallow the universe of their being
consider their eyes,
consider the smile you jack hammered out their mouth
and for one moment, pray for the ones they received those parts from.