7-8-16, When Violence Happens in the Middle of the Night

4:30 a.m. the baby cries for food
Eyes stuck shut
I pry them open with the light of my phone
Yesterday, black men died.
Apparently today, 10 police officers.
I don’t read. I don’t click the details.
I don’t want to know.
My best friend sleeps over, she stirs.
I could wake her, tell her, not be alone
I think of my husband, tired too from the gore.
But I am so done.
So don’t want to know.
I want them to wake up and not have to deal with more casualties in this American war
We live in a war.
All of those men were innocent.
The black and the white.
Once they were babes in arms like my boy
Both tired and awake
In the middle of the night.
From their vaccine shots the day before.
An innocent smile dances on and off his face
He laughs only because he knows me
Nothing else
He knows not of the world tumbling around him.
Those men shot, black and white
Felt this innocence once before
Smiled at the one they recognized.
The world did this to them, taught them to hate and be hated.
Kill and be killed.

Tonight they are the same, innocent and free again.

-Gillian

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