What Black Men Know

by Timothy W. Crawford

What have black boys heard?
Every bad word
that slid from the lips of 
black women 
who wore too many hats
and swung too many belts
and received too little help
from Men we'd grow up to be just like
or so we were told repeatedly 
imagine as babies
encouraged to "love all the ladies"
and that's the part
that freezes the heart
so instead of
inspiring us,
they began
describing us
hypnotising us
into zombie-like beings
until all is left are fist with no brains
self contained 
taught not to cry
taught how to die
in the streets
taught how to grind
in the sheets
boys who grew into men
instead of being raised to become men
because "yo daddy was a no good nicca back then!"
so why'd you sleep with him then?
I wanted to ask...
Ms. Shakur's and the Ms. Wallaces why we keep dyin
I wanted to ask...
the divas, and the fione sistas why they keep cryin
and why we are we scrubs
and bugaboos
and why is romance without finance a nuisance
and why isn't there anything going on but the rent
and as I pull 19 bullets out of Diallo's ass
I realize maybe you're not the ones I need to ask
that question
and maybe to answer some of your questions 
we could ask God to include directions 
witb babies
just a note for the next species 
that will surely take our place
cause we are bound to destroy this place 
if we as a race
sister and brother
can't learn to love-live together
and the bestwecansay is "whateva!"
getting our therapy 
from Mary's next LP
or being defined 
by Sisqo and Ginuwine...
we might never raise our kids right
we might never get out heads right
or wrap our brains around this one luv thing 
to realize 
in the end
all we need is love
all we need is love

What Black Men Know by Timothy W. Crawford

© Copyright 1999, 2000. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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