Young Identity’s poetic response to Cotton Panic!

can you help them?
can you help them?
A civil war asserts the throne
to devour this kingdom
perpetrators cementing concrete anchors
their fists brandishing piercing pleats
building their own chevrons
to kill off the livelihood
of this cotton dynasty

these tapestries bend forward
with no reverence
wings hang off torture racks
the mill workers fasten their hands
onto confederate flags
while their mouths swallow destitution
a bedlam for malnourish
used as a ball of thread
that stopped slavery rolling through the wedge press
their exploitation fed dinner plates dry
hunger that stretched thousands of miles away
to lay off the blizzard carrying their liberty
a locked cavity that wasn’t worth ingesting
This Metropolis shrunk to the size of a corset
serving a good deed better stored in the closet

– Meshach R. Brencher


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