Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Fracturing the World

Did you hear what happened last night?
Lawanda asked as I dropped my lunch off
in the cafeteria this morning

Nope. What happened?

Ciara's brother got shot.
He was with Emerald
(she's 7)
and another little kid.
He threw Emerald over this wall
to keep her away

Is he okay?

shoulder shrug
There are days I'm standing
on a battlefield with not enough equipment
an ER doctor with only band-aids in my pocket

the inadequate tools of my trade...
a pass to the social worker

a neighborhood fractures into pieces
teenagers dying
I helpfully stand around with glue and tape
trying to patch things up to get us through the day

It is not enough.

You become a teacher because you believe
education is hope--
everyone gets a chance
to make the best life

unless you die on your front stoop

Sometimes a kind teacher, a good school
is not good enough
we cast out a net across the grey streets
and hope to catch a thumbnail
of the children who live
layered in armor
protecting their corner of life

How do they make it out of bed?
trekking down the streets of glass
to adults who hug and smile
but can't change
the world


Blogger snowsparkle said...

omg ecm!!! great writing! i admire your succinct writing style and the urgency of your subject.... the shorthand of one who's working on the frontlines. not someone like me who's reasonably comfortable and secure. you are doing important work and making a difference, while all i can lay claim to is a liberal attitude and a kerry/edwards bumper sticker. i look forward to following your posts. may many blessings come your way. big hugs- snowsparkle

11:07 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

i feel you.
man oh man.
my shorties were all crying in circle, too.
of course, each time something happens,
it triggers memories...triggers exactly
how fragile the whole situation is around here.

they are so strong.

2:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Powerful entry ECMM! You capture the sadness and overwhelming nature of some parts of Baltimore so vividly.

3:23 PM  
Blogger madness rivera said...

Terrible. Really, really terrible. I fear for all children sometimes. Why must it be so hard for some especially?

You are changing the world.
My prayers are with the victim, his family, baby Emerald too.

3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh Em
How do they make it even through a day with some of the things they live with! My hope is that in some small way we can help. I don't know whether we can make it better, but maybe we can give them a place to turn, a place to hope. And hope is everything!Your words touch my soul.

8:55 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home