The Agitators

to work in the mornings

I walk the other direction

past a sign commemorating
Joshua
Glover

a runaway slave from St. Louis
maybe near where Ferguson is now

The Fugitive Slave Act
imprisoned
Joshua here in Milwaukee

but protestors
broke down
the jail’s door

so Joshua
could get to Canada
on the Underground Railroad

…………………….Looking back at your life
…………………….wouldn’t you like
…………………….to say

……………………………I wasn’t apathetic
……………………………I got involved
……………………………rose up to be counted
……………………………among the righteous

……………………………To watch
……………………………the movie of history
……………………………and say “That was us”?

Instead

you go to the shopping mall
when we disrupt
your passive participation

You’re at the ice
skating rink
or on your drive
home

Instead you type doubts
into your telephone

You must think the jail’s
doors
opened wide for
Joshua

to walk out free

You must think
movements
are birthed
without blood

Which is not
to say
we want
anything to snap

but those
chains

Which is to say
there are
those

who texted the rewrite
of History’s
highway

When we marched across it
into a trap

——————————————————————————-

Learn more about Joshua Glover.

Learn more about what has been happening in Milwaukee recently.

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