Slow Dance, With Bullet

After Michael Brown: Hope Wabuke

August 11, 2015  By Hope Wabuke

This is when you become

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this unarmed black boy shot

this white killer cop not

charged but given three months paid

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vacation plus one million

dollars in thanks for

this job well done.


This happened yesterday, too,

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the day before that. They used to say


     Dance, nigger dance and empty their guns


this was their theory:

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if you could rise fast enough the bullets

would not hit your feet.

This, the weight

of five centuries that did not break your back.

This, you were scared of then.

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This, you stiffened silent

and bore.

This will happen again

tomorrow. Different city, different dead

black boy body. But now

this straw needle.


Oh, how your baby boy loves to dance. His legs, though,

are little. He could never jump, high enough.



Request: Permission to Occupy Your Body, Roger Reeves


From Within the Dark-Blood Depths, Rachel Eliza Griffiths


Other Outrages, Other Deaths, Rion Amilcar Scott


A Brief History of the Present, Morgan Parker


Rachel. Trayvon. Michael. Dying. Laughing. A. Fiction., Kiese Laymon


How Do You Write From a Country That Doesn’t Exist, Danielle Evans


To not write another word about who the cops keep killing, Khadijah Queen


Am I a Reliable Witness to My Own Life?, Sarah Labrie


Keyword Search: “Ferguson” and “Mike Brown”, Angela Flournoy


Breath of Fresh Air, Yahdon Israel


A Very Brief History of Police Killings in the U.S., Metta Sáma


Hope Wabuke
Hope Wabuke
Hope Wabuke is a southern California based writer. She is a contributing editor for The Root and a contributing writer for Kirkus Reviews. Her work also been published in The Daily Beast, Salon, Gawker, Ozy, Ms. Magazine online, The North American Review and others. She is the author of the chapbook Movement No.1: Trains.

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