For Muhammad Ali
[Listen to a performance by the poet below]
American Apartheid kept the greatest
Boxer who ever lived from eating downtown in our hometown
Cause he was colored,
Despite his being
Endowed with the Gold
For fighting for his country and their star-spangled
God just days before.
He, even so, kept his gloves up, loudly
Intoned that black lives matter,
Kentucky Clay from which he sprang, was
Loaned a famed
Owing to the Ottoman lord—that well-known
Pasha of old.
Racism resounded. The
Supreme Court astounded by
Taking his side in the fight against their nation’s
Unfounded war against
We any better today? Aren’t we just as
Xenophobic and bigoted as our forebears of
Yesteryear, just as self-righteous
Zealous for what isn’t even ours?
July 22, 2020