Human Liberation, a poem for Marilyn

I only became aware of Marilyn after watching a DVD of the history of the Black Panthers.  I started corresponding with her in early 2007 and would like to think we became friends.  She was generous in her critique of my poetry. In “Autobiographi” she said:

wait for its prisoners to die
or go crazy
or simply wither away into insignificance”

Marilyn may have died but as long as there are people whose first concern is justice and respect for each other she will never wither away. This is a poem I wrote for her. In her modest way she stated that she didn’t think she measured up to my picture of her.

Human Liberation

– for Marilyn Buck, political prisoner

two million mostly black and brown
expensive in lives
expensive in dollars
slow genocide

who knows if you did
any of what empire accused
but when the average murderer
serves seven years inside
your eighty year sentence
is clearly unjust

three women living in a whitewashed concrete
cage built for one
no room
no property
no space
stored like lost baggage

the casual cruelty of male violence
keeps your female body in line
watching you in the shower
on the toilet
patting your body familiarly
for weapons of mass destruction
missing the missiles of your words
targeting you
expecting you
to cringe as a controlled victim

you must have scared them
Texas white girl
hanging with the brothers
looking for justice
looking for human rights
looking for women’s equality
you must have scared them
after sixteen years inside
they locked you in a hole in a hole
September 11 terrorism

a paranoid police state
will never celebrate you
they cannot force you
to cut out your own tongue

by Larry Kerschner,  peacepoet at

About Blog admin

The extended friends and family of Marilyn Buck, 1947-2010
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