Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Deep, dark, rich, rolling, hot chocolate.
Bubbling over with pride, pain and confusion as to why? The pantheon of tombstones for a people vitally owed the heartbeat of civilizations. Culture, music and blood. Bred in every existent vein. Diamond, mitochondrial chains.
Yet, still… we hang?
Ain’t that again strange
for the ladies day and the
gentlemen late at night.

Why not a Hall of Fame?
Some magnanimous mountain peak to pay
homage to the Black, brave and rested.
Asphyxiated, cardiac infarctions
DDA in lieu of arrested.
Silenced and slain too soon.
Why are we so heavily
invested in crypto collectives overseas?
When poverty spreads like a leporous disease, we’ve fallen
off, onto main thorough fares.
Not just side streets and alleys.

Homeless is the new franchise.
Over 1.6 million now being
underserved, kicked to the curb.
Despair flows like tears
from glazed-over eyes. Exploited for our
souls, exposed to the blistering
cold of Black codes.

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. The Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned. The work is lightly edited but has not been otherwise fact-checked.

Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under a Creative Commons license.

Aoki Pink

Aoki Pink is an African American writer who was born in South Central Los Angeles and enjoys music, ice cream and making people laugh. She uses writing as a vehicle for social change and sees education and creative arts to be a way to reaffirm and reimagine the human condition through the eyes of the Black experience. She is incarcerated at California Institution for Women. Aoki Pink is her pen name.