Ode to the Angry Brother

Oh, Angry Brother I thought I knew you, your preoccupation with Farrakhan your sentences punctuated with ‘ya unnerstand’, but I know now that I don’t know you at all. I misinterpreted your balled fists and pursed lips as symptoms of a burning fire in your belly, a fire that reason nor progress could quell. I assumed that your black shirt, black pants, black shoes were your soldiers uniform, shielding you from all of the evil whiteness that America had born from the blinding white cotton fields to the crisp white sheets of klansmen, the button down shirts of politicians and blood streaked American flag. I felt that anger burning hot in your veins, spilling out in an aura of glowing red. Caution! Black man. Beware! I thought this fever had made you blind, sickened your spirit and turned your heart to ash. 

I thought you had forgotten to be human and all that was left of yourself was the burnt black inside of a man, burnt black to match his politics, but I was wrong. I was realized I was wrong when I saw you cry. I saw your heart fill with emotion and spill out onto your cheeks. I saw that the pain you kept in check was a pain that I’d numbed myself. Angry Brother, why you’re not angry at all you’re just in mourning. In mourning for your people who are still asleep. In mourning for your country who continues to slumber, even as bombs, pollution, and internal strife threaten to destroy it. In mourning for babies you one day hope to teach who you fear you may not have the tools to learn. Oh, Angry Brother, you still my brother and though I can’t comfort you I want you to know… I understand.