An African parent and child paint

The Role of the Artist

tell my momma i’m up before 9am
plottin escape from the empire again
throwin rocks at a man-made sun
gathering firewood for the pentagon
practicin my slingshot stance
tryna play dominoes wit giants
tryna topple puppet governments
i’m two decades off my rocker
third generation off the plantation
got a bad habit of Maroon conspiracies
got an attraction to New Afrikan landscapes
got a mean two step for the after party
tell the law nothin of substance
tell the people everything you can
tell no lies cuz it’s raining pig tongues
claim no easy way out cuz backdoors are faulty
it’s a whole lot of textbook revolutionaries
it’s a whole lot of part-time freedom fighters
makin full-time money off surviving the 60s
my father told me to keep my head down
i keep that in mind behind sandbag barricades
my poems mean nothin if you don’t see me
outside is callin for a different kind of artist
one who knows the importance of spare mags
one who don’t back down from defense
one who knows there’s a time for canvas
and a time to make political art out of a jaw line.

More from this Writer

Darius Simpson is a writer, educator, performer, and skilled living room dancer from Akron, Ohio. His work has appeared in New Ohio Review, The Adroit Journal, Crab Creek Review, and others. Darius believes in the dissolution of empire and the total liberation of all Afrikans by any means available.