While you were out (of the country)

To Matt, on his trip to Italy.

While you were out (of the country)
everyone carried on murdering on another.
Cops killed Black folks:
Alton Sterling Alton Sterling Alton Sterling
Philando Castile Philando Castile Philando Castile,
which allegedly precipitated another Black man,
Micah Johnson Micah Johnson Micah Johnson
to sniper out some Po.
But we’ll never actually know if he did that
because despite having detained three other suspects,
the Blue sent a robot to blow MJ up,
and as they say in Pirates of the Caribbean,
“Dead men tell no tales.”

While you were out of (of the country)
I saw that in Italy,
where you were,
a crazed Italian sports fan,
called out a racial epithet to a Nigerian woman–
a woman who had barely escaped her Motherland
fleeing Boko Haram–
and then she lost her partner,
Emmanuel Chidi Namdi Emmanuel Chidi Namdi Emmanuel Chidi Namdi,
who stood up for her against Footballer Number One,
watching as her man got beat to a pulp,
to death,
leaving her alone
in Italy
while tourists snapped photos of monuments
and escaped their own troubles
by floating down the canals of Venice.

Nothing against your tourism.
I ran away, to be a tourist, too.
I ran to my Mother,
the Ocean.
I left work sick–
sick of the world where everyone keeps killing,
dying
for no reason.
Sick of business as usual
where we put on our fancy earrings and pretend that
marketing and social media and consulting
are the panaceas for problems that don’t exist:
propaganda for ignorance.
Sick of weighing problems like race wars
and Zika
and coal ash in the water because Governor Pat McCrony
needs to make a few more dollars,
and doesn’t care about the rural locals who don’t deserve clean water to drink.

How much more of this could I bear
without running away?
How much could you?

I spent the weekend listening to the Mother breathe in
and out
in and out
in and out,
reading Harry Potter,
and missing our day-to-day sanity check conversations.

I hope your getaway to an old, old place
has restored your old, old soul.
I wish you didn’t have to come back to reality,
and I wish you would hurry back soon
because I miss my friend.

While you were out (of the country),
I missed you,
but life carried on,
and I anticipate when you come back
we can carry on carrying each other on.

Better love hath no one than this:
than living and dying a friend.

 

(photo credit by Matt: subject, photographer, and friend.)

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