Bye-Bye Binaries (for Annika)

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We are coming up to the crossroads,
But they look like borders.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

I know your life ain’t been no crystal stair,
And mine has had tacks in it.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

We came through,
Seeing past
My privileged poverty
and
Your oppressed opulence.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

The two of us?
We are:
Clover and Anna
Marlee and Liz
T.J.  and Andy
Ella and Z
Wren and Darra
Gabby and David

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

They directed you into a police state,
Leaving me devastated, needing to make a statement.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

We are coming up to the crossroads,
But they look like borders.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

We will stand up tall
State our case
Hold our heads up high
Lift our voices
Raise our fists

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

Now they understand
Just why our head’s are not bowed.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

 

Into a daybreak that is wondrously clear,
We rise!

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

We have come to realize that my destiny is tied up with your destiny.
My freedom is inextricably bound to your freedom.
We cannot walk alone.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

We are friends, comrades,
Unapologetically.

What should we do when we get to the crossroads?
They can’t separate us if we’re holding hands!

We rise!

 

NaPoWriMo – Day 26 prompt

“Write a poem that incorporates a call and response. Calls-and-responses are used in many sermons and hymns (and also in sea chanties!), in which the preacher or singer asks a question or makes an exclamation, and the audience responds with a specific, pre-determined response.”

 

 

 

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A Few More

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian             by Sherman Alexie

Grades 7-12

Junior (Arnold) has an opportunity to leave his reservation to attend a better school.  While he does so, he faces the challenges of being a minority, anger from old friends who feel abandoned, and family issues.  With a mix of humor, and excellent artwork (by Ellen Fornay), Junior deals with issues common to any teen coming-of-age, and issues significant to Native Americans on a reservation.

My Rating:  5 Stars

Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis

Grades 5 to 8

In this historical fiction piece, set in the 1930s, Bud moves through some foster homes, not asking for trouble, yet finding it.  Finally, he decides to “go on the lam” (run away) to find his dad.  Believing that his dad is Herman E. Calloway, Bud travels from Flint, MI to Grand Rapids to find Calloway and his band.  All Bud has are some “Rules and Things to Have  a Funner Life”,  a suitcase with some belongings, and his name, Bud, not Buddy.

My Rating:  4 Stars

Skinny by Ibi Kaslik

Grade 9-12+

Holly (14) and Giselle (22) take turns telling the story chapter by chapter.  Giselle is struggling with a co-dependent relationship with her boyfriend Sol, anorexia, and being a grown-up.  Holly is trying to be a teenager, while holding up her emotionally broken sister, and emotionally absent mother.  Both girls grieve the loss of their father, and cling to each other to get through life.

My Rating: 4 Stars

Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes by Chris Crutcher

Grades 8 through 12+

Eric and Sarah have a friendship that goes back for years, and was originally based on being two misfits.  Eric was obese and Sarah’s face is scarred from a burn that happened when she was 3.  When Eric joins the swim team, he loses weight, and his social life changes.  At first, because he cares about Sarah, Eric tried to keep the weight on, to prove that he wouldn’t bail  on her.  Sarah’s circumstances become so severe that Eric goes out of his way to show Sarah that he cares for her regardless of his weight.  Eric would do anything to keep Sarah safe, even if it means risking his own life.

My Rating:  5 Stars