Blinding yellow against charred black buildings,
Forsythia bloom the same in inner city yards.
Unaware of incongruities,
They adorn yards abandoned by White Flight,
Buildings burned in anger, leaving scars from the shock of murdered leaders.
Bold, fresh, yellow-green blades,
Pierce with determination through chipped brick and broken glass,
Blades once watered by middle class sprinklers;
Forsythia defy the evolution of owners to renters,
And remain stubbornly resilient.
Dogwoods, too, persist.
They dare to drop their delicate petals,
Painting pastel patterns onto derelict cars,
Dropping into potholes unaware.
Spring’s season makes no class distinctions.
Nor do the children, ah the children,
With their happy graceful Black arms
Flaying in play.
The children sensitive, vulnerable as dogwood petals,
Pour out of now four-family flats,
The children, too, decorate the city streets,
And imbibe the sun’s yellow.
The children, yet untainted, unknowing, how
History records and thwarts charred Blackness.
History will too soon limit the freedom of their springtime play,
As they evolve into adolescents of motherhood come too early.
Come, children, dance among the forsythia.
On Seventh and Summit.
Dance while your limbs move alive.
Carolyn Sur, SSND