On Writing

Poem 52 – Headstones on the Potomac Shore

Headstones on the Potomac Shore

The Potomac coughs up headstones
from the Columbian Harmony Cemetery.

Heavy slabs of memories choke on a story
that won’t stop repeating its violent conflicts.

The bodies of 37,000 black residents uprooted
reburied – names replaced with the silence of sold markers.

For 60 years Keckley, Fleetwood, Shadd and more
six feet under footsteps that do not know soul’s writhe 

beneath withering in the agony of unrest. It’s time the water’s
throat clears that the lapping lips of Hope’s swan song 

recovers the melodies of lives lived – re-tell celebrate remember
so the wrong is dammed – stopped in flow to reap its finish line.

Heave and lift the stones by heart and hand – do not ever do this again.

Research: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/columbian-harmony-cemetery-history-37000-black-dc-residents/


*Note: Yesterday’s poem was 51 not 50 making today’s 52.

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