the word “black,”
by definition,
means “the absence of light.”
but I am much more
than a shadow.
sometimes blackness
is the darkness
that haunts
unenlightened minds
and sometimes
people talk about me
as if I am a cold, night sky
without the spark of a bonfire.
but, being black,
by definition,
is luminary
because being black
is beautiful.

the spirit of freedom,
by definition,
is the absence of war,
but freedom has to be
fought for.
we’ve lost too many battles
tiptoeing around
land mines of ignorance.
there are bombs of broken ash
buried in the blood
of enslaved hearts.
but the definition of freedom
is boundless
because the spirit of freedom
is beautiful.

to be human,
by definition,
is to be flesh and bone
but our flesh
has been a bone of contention.
even love is unsafe
from the fires of hatred,
where judgement burns our skin
with scars.
but being human,
by definition,
is not without pain.
being human
is beautiful.