Someone Let Him In

But No One’s Held Accountable

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

An elementary school
One dead set on security
One with bills to pay
Just like all of us
One dollar away from closing
One family trust shy
Of the things we thought 
We paid for

You can hire a new person
Who won’t recognize faces
The ones who can’t hurt us
The solidarity of community
Hate splayed on the inside
Where maybe my child
Sat for lunch last week

Some stranger’s scribblings
The need to feel power
Let in with a key
Who has the key
Who knows the combination
A man with some ink
Who chooses White Power

A statement so bold
Written where our children eat
How did he get here
A friend of the family
So bold to hold witness
To the comfort we seek

When I was a child
It was better to hide
Where the ones before
Me arrived from
Could be shot by a kid
Who said it would happen 
At recess

This mother won’t be quiet
This is not what she chose 
For her son
She chose at least hoping
For the illusion of safety
He wouldn’t have to run

Graffiti so loud
Drafts of future lives
Quaking
You were not supposed 
To be here
But someone let you in.


Samantha Lazar 2019

Other work by Samantha Lazar:Cut Yourself Open (And Let Your Writing Heal You)
What locked boxes are hidden deep in your closet?medium.com

Where Will My Child Be Safe?

A Poem in Response to Prompt: Maps

Photo by Matt Popovichon Unsplash

We all sleep, and breathe and dream in this city —

But do not go east at night, dear child.

I have mapped these crimes,
These grand indictments.
These crossed lines 
Extend past daybreak too
I’ve heard these tales, and steer clear
Of the latitudes and longitudes.

And south of here, right by school
Where you want to just look at Lego sets
Even though we have groceries to get — 
This parking lot becomes territory
To lost souls who are not here
For Starbucks or weekly shopping peace.

And yes, all 12 voted, first degree
Behind your soccer practice fields
Mark on your map, a felony.
Don’t be alone for crossfire then — 
Please hold my hand,
Just hold my hand.

And north of course,
Where you were born
Suspicious vehicle left to emergency
A man, left to bleed, 
a kid, really — 
Only 16.

Does his mother weep?
Her sweet son lost in the same driveway
Where first we both drove home,
Nursed our newborn boys
To sleep. 
Mark the north spot. Ink it, deep.

Well west, you said,
Mama look how the sun sets — 
It’s so beautiful, Mama. 
Please look away my child.
I learned that predators are out on bail, 
And I have no more ways for us to sail.

© Samantha Lazar 2019

Originally Published Here.