Set fire-words to burn and refine
Flames licking as I rhyme, Black Lives Matter.
Don’t pet his hair or pound his fist.
It’s asinine, and Blacks Lives Matter.
You say you don’t notice his skin.
Ignorance is “color blind,” and Black Lives Matter.
When you spit that “blue” or “all” do
You undermine that Black Lives Matter.
From ship to field to prison --
still confined. Ask yourself, do Black Lives Matter?
We shake at hoodies and traffic stops.
You say we’re fine. Do Black Lives Matter?
Elect a president who heaves
hate in headline? How can we say Black Lives Matter?
Hands in the air, what more can he do?
How else should he sign that Black Lives Matter?
Red pools on rough asphalt
boy, still and supine. Black Lives Matter.
Stop projecting we’re violent
or over-define #Black Lives Matter.
Your kids call him "nigger"
at school, in line. Tell them Black Lives Matter.
Do you have any of your own?
He is mine, and so Black Lives Matter.
At the orphanage, clinging to me koala style --
that time, sublime, so Black Lives Matter.
Mom, he calls, like his white brother --
In my hazel, his brown shines. Black Lives Matter.
Author of the inspiring, Searched the World Over for Elie: An International Adoption Story, Sherilyn Olsen teaches workshops part-time and is working towards an MA in English at Weber State University. She and her husband live in Utah with their four children.