Thursday, 5 May 2016

A poem by Deonte Osayande

Terminal Ethnicity

Being diagnosed with terminal
ethnicity prevents many students

from completing their assignments
on time since
they are serving
time                 customers                    their country

and everyone thinks they can see everything
they need to know from their
record              clothes             skin                  name

instead of how they are tested
            in class             outside of class 
                        at work            at home
                                    with friends     with family.

Everyone assesses how
            threatening      talented           intelligent
                        old                   young
these students will be before they die. I would know

seeing as alternative medicine now embraces
the curative powers
            of death           of quarantine 
                        in a cell

and I've been avoiding being
            assimilated      assassinated
by a public who would have their country
vaccinated in this genocidal way.

Deonte Osayande is a former track and field sprinter turned writer from Detroit, Mi. He writes nonfiction essays and his poems have been nominated for the Best of the Net Anthology, a Pushcart Prize and published in numerous publications. He has represented Detroit at multiple National Poetry Slam competitions. He's currently a professor of English at Wayne County Community College, and teaching youth through the Inside Out Detroit Literary Arts Program.

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