Juneteenth!

Juneteenth Flag

From my award-winning epic poem, “Black Shadows and Through the White Looking Glass: Remembrance of Things Past and Present”:

XXI

The Emancipator,

the Great Friend of the Negro,

wanted to save the Union,

at any cost.

The South could have slavery,

but it couldn’t

break up the Union.

Southern disunionists.

Southern Secessionists.

The Confederate States of America.

The rebel states,

the Confederacy,

forced Abe’s hand.

The Union was torn asunder.

Confederate cannons fired

on Fort Sumter.

Bloody fighting began.

It raged on.

At first blush,

redneck Southerners

had more to lose.

They fought with that passion

of people who believe

in what they’re fighting for.

Northerners weren’t

quite so passionate.

Were white men dying

so black men could be free?

Draft riots in New York City.

White mobs attacking blacks,

willing to risk their lives

fighting black men

but not fighting white men

so black men could be free.

The Emancipation Proclamation,

the Day of Jubilee! —

a shrewd political move.

The Day of Jubilee! —

Juneteenth.

Black feed dancing in the streets,

remembering the holy beat.

The balance of power

suddenly shifted.

The Northern cause

was infused with black passion.

Blacks in the slave states

were “freed” to fight

their former masters,

while the slaves in the

states loyal to the Union

remained slaves.

“Slaves in the Union,

obey your masters.”

“Slaves in the Confederacy,

do not obey your masters.”

Take up arms.

Fight for your freedom!

Liberty or death!

1st North Carolina Volunteers

Corps d’ Afrique.

54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry.

Marching to glory.

Blacks fought with the passion

of people who have everything

to lose, and gain.

They had to.

Redneck rebels would

kill black POWs —

no gentlemen rules of war —

that legendary southern

gentility absent —

not for black soldiers,

no Geneva convention.

One of white men’s greatest fears

had come true.

Black men were facing

them across a battlefield,

the levelest of all playing fields.

Facing death.

Death, the great equalizer.

When black soldiers were captured,

they were killed.

The brutality against them

was inflicted with passion,

like crimes of passion,

destroying genitalia —

the big black cock

that had frightened white men

from the very beginning.

This treatment of black POWs,

of black soldiers,

was even more brutal

than the brutalest

treatment meted out

to the most recalcitrant slave.

These black soldiers

represented

the ultimate threat

to slave masters.

They’d set

a dangerous precedent.

They’d taken up arms.

They’d vowed

to kill white men,

slave masters

and their supporters,

for black freedom,

not to save the Union.

This outraged

white slave masters.

“How dare niggers

take up arms

against white men.

Abe was crazy

to arm niggers

in the first place,

to provide the seeds

for a future race war.”

Black Shadows and Through the White Looking Glass

 

 

About Easy Waters

Award-winning poet, playwright and writer. Author of three books of poetry, "Black Shadows and Through the White Looking Glass: Remembrance of Things Past and Present"; "Sometimes Blue Knights Wear Black Hats"; "The Black Feminine Mystique," and a novel, "Streets of Rage." All four books are available on Amazon.com.
This entry was posted in Black patriotism, Black Shadows and Through the White Looking Glass, Justice Chronicles, Lest We Forget, Poetry, Politics, race, Revolution and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Juneteenth!

  1. Dawn Ravella says:

    Ps- I’m on the reformed church email for this .

    Sent from my iPhone

    Like

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