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Image by Diego via Unsplash

The world is falling apart at the seams.
White supremacists work to usher in a new regime,
infecting Blacks and Hispanics, deporting our dreams,
while people stand in lines for soup, rice, and beans. 

Protests and murals and speeches get seen,
trampled by law enforcement boots on the scene. 
More stick time and MRAPS intervene,
while Black police sweep the streets clean. 

Prisons locked down, punished with quarantine.
More healthy people get COVID-19.
Incarcerated people caught between
rehabilitation, riots, and cell latrines. 

The issue is people don’t see all of humanity
as worthy of their time and scrutiny, 
so while minorities slave in prison factories,
the rich receive gratitude for their mastery.

Yet they wear masks, their cotton cross hatchery
of fearmongering and terrorism, gradually
corroding minds with fears of replacing statues. See — 
to make laws that oppress and infect accurately. 
Vanishing the marginalized and scheming,
attacking revolutionaries, citing insanity,
using firearms and face masks, vanity,
weaving pain and suffering tapestries…

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.

George Coles-El is a poet, writer, graffiti artist and tutor. He writes under the pen name Mesro Dhu Rafa’a, which means “stand with the sun, master of the ascendants.” During the COVID-19 pandemic, he completed an anthology of writings called "Unsung Hero." He is incarcerated in California.