I’m proud to say
I went to an historic elementary school.
I’m disappointed in my education
Delivered in a town so steeped in history
And a state, oops, I mean commonwealth,
That so glosses over the past
With a disturbing social silence.
The southern history of fighting for freedom
Only seems pertinent
For the separation from England
Or the defense against the northern invaders,
But it’s so white washed
It’s barely even palatable, less so patriotic.
How am I just learning today
Of school district’s being closed
Just so private schools could exclude
Kids of color from an equal chance to learn?
Why wasn’t I told this in 1975?
My favorite place of learning
Was just a few years removed from
Being converted from a segregated high school
To a beautiful example of what could be
When we work together.
I wish I had known then
So I could understand now.
Still, today, the dialogue fails to speak.
Injustice, mistrust, and the hush
In schools continue to pretend
The past never happened
Or that the present
Needs to be talked about.
The same pressures to be quiet exist today,
Pride, fear, control, avoidance of controversy…
The same consequences abound, too,
Anger, violence, hate…
Shouldn’t we open up???