Poetry Break

“Mama Said” by Isaac Nellum

As I write this post, George Floyd’s killer stands trial. Derek Chauvin’s defense tries to diminish his involvement in Floyd’s death, stating it was drugs or a bad lifestyle that caused it. But evidence is building up against that narrative. Dr. Lindsey Thomas, a forensic pathologist, saw things differently by stating: “There’s no evidence to suggest he would have died that night except for the interactions with law enforcement” (NY Times).

Medical examiner, Dr. Andrew Baker also debunks the defense’s story by stating that drugs and heart disease might have aided in Floyd’s death, they were not the cause of it (Yahoo). While specialist Dr. Martin Tobin stated, “A healthy person subjected to what Mr. Floyd was subjected to would have died” (KNSI Radio).

But so many people have heard this story before. So many more will continue to live it. A white cop, in the heat of the moment, makes a brash decision that leads to an unarmed, black man’s death. Black Lives Matters seems to have become profanity in the mouths of those who “back the blue.” And these are the same people who turned their backs on the police as the stormed the halls of Congress to overturn the outcome of a fair election.

This is why I have chosen Isacc Nellum’s (aka lebunny) poem, “Mama Said” as the fourteenth poem for National Poetry Month.

Poetry Break

National Poetry Month 2021

Photo by Thought Catalog from Pexels
  1. “The Hill We Climb” by Amanda Gorman
  2. “Fight for Love” by Andrea Gibson
  3. “To Elsie” by William Carlos Williams
  4. “A Life of Errands” by Leonard Cohen
  5. “American Arithmetic” by Natalie Diaz
  6. “In the Event of My Demise” by Tupac Amaru Shakur
  7. “Love Calls Us to the Things of This World” by Richard Wilbur
  8. “Grief Calls Us to the Things of This World” by Sherman Alexie
  9. “Stone” by Charles Simic
  10. “Said the Shotgun to the Head” by Saul Williams
  11. “Memoir” by Vijay Seshadri
  12. “You Love a River” by Ire’ne Lara Silva
  13. “Process for Undocumented Students” by Celina Gomez
  14. “Mama Said” by Isaac Nellum
  15. “Heaven, or Whatever” by Shane Koyczan
  16. “April 16, 2007” by Jared Singer
  17. “Stop and Frisk” by Claudia Rankine
  18. “Pearl” by Ted Kooser
  19. “A Statement from No One, Incorporated” by Justin Phillip Reed
  20. “Grace” by Joy Harjo
  21. “Wanting to Die” by Anne Sexton
  22. “Going Back to Sleep” by Molly Brodak
  23. “I Love You Big Brother” by Alex Lemon
  24. “Declaration” by Tracy K. Smith
  25. “Whiteness Walks Into a Bar” by Franny Choi
  26. “History Reconsidered” by Clint Smith III
  27. “The Color of COVID” by Darius Simpson
  28. “The Raven” by Edgar Allan Poe
  29. “How to Read a Poem” by Guillermo
  30. “Earthrise” by Amanda Gorman