Eight years ago today,
I walked into my second grade classroom
and didn’t know what my teacher was showing on the projector.
I didn’t know what the word “inauguration” meant,
or what the words our new president spoke really meant.
I’d heard the words liberty and justice for all.
Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
All men are created equal.
And that is what I learned to associate with America.
Today, I know what is happening.
I know what an inauguration is,
and I know what those words really mean.
I know that they don’t mean what our reality currently is.
And I am scared for the second graders of today.
The second graders of today who are learning
that liberty and justice for all doesn’t mean much
to our new leader.
Who are learning that maybe all men all created equal,
but all women and all immigrants and all
people of color and all disabled people and
all religions and so many others
are not given the same chances.
When you have to sit down and tell a bunch of
nine year old children that they have to be
bigger and stronger inside than
the leader of the free word-
that’s a problem.
And I’m scared for all the second graders of today.
One by one
the fireworks exploded
without a single burst of sound
without a single touch of color.
And nobody cheered because
nobody wanted to celebrate
the country of the free and
the home of the brave
when everyone was
locked behind bars