Reading, writing, ‘rithmetic of rifles
(for Uvalde and other schools…)
Blood-splattered backpacks and papers strewn beneath
Summer dreams blasted out orange-sized exit wounds.
High velocity .223s chased children into “harm’s
way;” “wrong place, wrong time—” last school
days—first double digit years of their lives.
Gut-punched parents receive swabs matching DNA with
powder-burned bodies. Instead of reviewing report
cards And smiling ear-to-ear.
Terror-etched faces—emptied eyes—listen to doctors
'bout 'bleeding out’ in 5 minutes. 'Bout cold store whole
blood transfusions…Must parents master this
Warfare-failed state, carnage curricula, forces
teachers to teach to tests: Safe words. Hand signals.
Switched off lights. Locked doors—blocked with desks. Hiding
silently. Climbing over classmates’ bullet-riddled bodies;
crawling/running/slipping on scarlet floors— ‘snuff porn targets’
in capitalist video games…
“Good guys with guns”…arrive… Yellow tape, Blue Lives
Matter Most mindsets...Fabulous strike- breakers who strike
marchers; pepper-spray protestors; knee necks—And
Sauntering and loitering overtime. “Good guys with guns,” fully
funded/trained—Tackling, tasering, cuffing salt of the earth;
Lunch bucket parents, Suspected of attempted life saving...
Moments of silence…Semi-automatic “thoughts and prayers;”
Hollow-point “horrific and heart-breaking” blast from muzzles of
merchants of death. Market shares skyrocket as platoons of copy
groomed by Grandma Genocide/Grandad Slavery line up
(I close my eyes and imagining 400 million guns tumbling—like
on Costa Rican,
Ghanaian, Swiss streets…
Weekly mass murders? Cops killing a thousand a
year? “That’s ‘life’” shrugged shoulders?)
Say it’s ae terrible dream…shooter downstairs—lower
grades — where lil’ Elijah sometimes says, “I’m sad…” as we check
in, serving snacks. Shooter storms the school farm—
Blasting Farmers Ben and Beth and children pulling greens from
black soil— Enters classroom off cafeteria, Chef Kathy’s
teaching salads/cooking skills…
Shooter storms Ms Cross’s 4th grade class—I’m tutoring the lil
mocha brown sister in aunt’s custody; Berkeley High basket
blonde, blue-eyed twins; Yemen’s Ayat reading out from
of beheading embassy butchers…
I jackknife up! Woke with gnarled NRA images: Ms Johnson
after lunch. Long-gun strapped across shoulders managing
her class! Ms Logan, chalkboard, Glock hugging hip. And
Principal, flaunting sidearm—rather than love detecting
Arms, hugging her students mornings at playground
© 2022. Raymond Nat Turner, The Town Crier. All RightsReserved.
Former forklift driver/warehouse worker/janitor, Raymond Nat Turner is a NYC poet;
BAR's Poet-in-Residence; and founder/co-leader of the jazz-poetry ensemble UpSurge!NYC.
You can Vote for his work at: GoFundMe PayPal: paypal.me/towncrierRNT