for Ruchell “Cinque” Magee

runaway in a heavy fog of gunfire
survivor of the whirlwind
decades down but never silent
they thought they caged you
i want to mention forgiveness
ask if we deserve any in this life
for not shooting the gates
til the doors fell to their knees 
til the solitary hole echoed your
absence so loud the prison imploded
can we say you’re free now
or that you haven’t always been
how dare we say rest in _____
when you got so much retroactive
livin to catch up on now with all
the chains of mortality melted away
brother they think you left us
you rebel who cried freedom toward
an audience unwilling to fight back
how dare we not scorch earth
leave ashes of your name everywhere
with less than half of your courage
we could swim directly into
the stomach of an antarctic whale
build a life for 67 years in captivity
then waltz out smiling with guns drawn

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.