The world's only newspaper written by poets

20884987_10154790584415108_1024181342_n

Seeing White Supremacists in Charlottesville

in Charlottesville/U.S. by

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VIRGINIA – August 12, 2017
I knew what it looked like before I saw it, as I’ve seen it, as

I’ve seen slavers and I’ve seen the eyes of my brother
when he’s yelling things past people he’s called family.

I’ve seen faces hardened like silt into stone with years of anger,
shock-drawn with coward. I knew the neo-nazis would be sick

and white and male, toting fire and petroleum, and that
this night was one night among many where their

throats scratched with more than the threat of violence.
I knew their handshakes were sweaty and firm with death.

I knew these men trailed young women in the night. Toted
pain, denial, and addiction like automatic weapons.

I knew they were coming from work, or psalms, or childcare
or class. I knew they proliferated like bombs.

I knew they clung to symbols like boys to lead tin soldiers and clutched the metal coattails
of histories they didn’t understand.

But I didn’t predict their faces lit up like Christmas carolers,
shameless as beasts, whitened by grocery store torches.

I didn’t know they had abandoned their hoods
or just how much they claimed the brutal allegiance of America.

 


Read More:
Donald Trump’s comments on Charlottesville legitimize violence by right wing extremists [Australian Broadcasting Corporation]
Charlottesville, Virginia is about choosing who we want to be as a nation [The Root]
The hoods are off [The Atlantic]

Jenna Spagnolo is the co-director of Poets Reading the News.

Latest from Charlottesville

dean-hinnant-349985

A Prayer for America

By Angel Sands Gunn. "'Does America deserve to survive?' Faulkner asked, knowing
PRTN (6)

Waypoints

By Howard Debs. Calculating the route that the suspected killer of Heather
veeterzy-113210

Country

By Nico Amador. After a deadly white supremacist rally, a love for
Go to Top