Two White Men Meet For Lunch
Zauni Tanil

they discuss a man whose hair sprouts toward the heaven
kneeling on soil tilled by his own ancestors
silently protesting
forcing the world to remember
the names of those that were taken
those that were murdered
refusing to let the sins of a country
skate by unscathed
he kneels
and the world in white
begins burning things
once more
they discuss him in loathing tones
echoing their discomfort of having
to listen to the woes of a man
fighting for the dying

they speak these things around me

and I cannot help but think
how disconnected you must be
from the world
from the human race
to not understand
people are hurting

to care more for the safety
of your comfort
the sunday night sounds
of entertainment
in backgrounds
as dinner cooked silently
by loathing wives drenched in
bitter self-righteousness
sits untouched on the counter

you would rather we die not so loudly
rather we embrace death just a little more quietly
as to not disturb your mundane
two white men fight harder for their
right to mediocrity
than for a black man to remain breathing

two white women trade empowerment speeches
written, stolen, from the backs of black women
claiming struggles they believe themselves so
deserving of enduring over lattes after spin class

it is not fair, they think
let me be the one to respond
let me be the one to say, I think

the white world
you have no right to your anger
you are not deserving of your rage
you have no claim to your discomfort

people are hurting
an entire generation
a collective is dying

and you are uncomfortable
because we won't die silently
for you to enjoy your entertainment
on a sunday night television screen

shame, I say
shame on your soul

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