July 13, 2016

We will Write your Names upon our Hearts because your Lives Mattered.



So many lives to count, but never too many to be named—

because we need to name the murdered,

the Men and Women of Color

who were victims of a

sanctioned genocide in the name of Justice.


We will remember your names:

Alton Sterling

Philando Castile

Freddie Gray

Walter Scott

Eric Garner

Keith Childress

Bettie Jones

Dominick Wise


and the hundreds more who have been killed.


Because Your Life Mattered

Because Black Lives Matter

Because Life is Precious

Because You Deserved to Live


Because you deserved to be held in love,

you deserved to be treated with respect,

you deserved to go home

to your family and friends.


Because you did not deserve to die

in an unnamed war,

to be named as another “Black Man Shot.”

So we will paint Your Name upon our hearts

and we will stand in Love

to Raise Up Justice,

to expose these Cultural Shadows

so we will never forget.


Because we can never forget.

Because we need to feel—

the rage

the terror.


We need to feel—

the despairing grief of the mother,

the hot tears of injustice,

the absolute terror for those

who lost their son, daughter, father, mother,

friend, lover, brother and sister,

to hands of hatred, racism, classism and patriarchy;

to hundreds of years of torture,

to the systematic hunt and kill of African Americans,

of People of Color.


Because we must feel

this rage and terror.

Because we must not

isolate our hearts and remain numb.

Because we must go

deep into this trauma

that is lived by every

Person of Color.


And we must transform this fear,

this hatred and racism,

because it is time to heal Racial Genocide

and allow the reality of Hate

to Wake Us

to Shake Us

to Show Us the Truth,

so we will Act

and not go back to our comfortable lives

of complacency.


As White People of Privilege,

we need to feel this deep in our bones.

We must own this and refuse to allow this.

We must not go back to sleep.


As White People of Privilege,

we must Listen and Learn,

Humble ourselves and Grow together.

We are not here to save.

We are here to support.

We are here to change ourselves

and use our own power

to Change this System.

Standing side by side

with our Comrades of Color,

we will Scribe the Names of the Fallen

upon the Walls of Bureaucracy,

within the Halls of Separation,

upon the Graves of the Men

who Killed the Innocent.


And hopefully, one day,

there will be forgiveness.

We must stand side by side

as we did with King,

and we must never

walk away

Because Black Lives Matter

Because Life is Precious

Because They Deserved to Live

Because We Have a Dream

that All Men and Women are

Created Equal.


Because all Life is Sacred,

and Black Lives must Matter

for All Life to Matter.


Author: Ashley Aurora

Image: 5chw4r73/Flickr

Editors: Nicole Cameron; Yoli Ramazzina

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Ashley Aurora