Flying the Confederate Flag, by Arlene Antoinette

Driving to church for the early morning
service, I stopped at a red light and
waited for the green light to send me
on my way. A motorcyclist turned off
the main street onto the side road
where I was stopped, passing my car
on the left. As I watched him ride by, I noticed
a small confederate flag flying from the
rear of his motorcycle seat. For a moment
I was surprised, but I was not shocked. What
shocked me the most was that I, a Brooklynite
at heart, continued to live in a part of America
where the confederate flag is still displayed
proudly. Years earlier, I left New York to find
a quieter way of life. What I was unaware
of back then was that sometimes beautiful
green fields come attached to rifles in the rear
of pick-up truck cabins and confederate flags
decorating license plates, tee-shirts and flag poles.
I glanced once more at the Caucasian man
riding away from me and wondered about
his upbringing, his family, his friends. The
light changed, and I turned left onto the main
road and headed off to praise my God who
is color blind and all inclusive.

..

Arlene Antoinette is a poet and lyricist. Her work has been published in various journals and magazines.

 

 

 

Arlene Antoinette

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Tears, by Arlene Antoinette

We were created from dirt. As we
were being formed by the hands
of God, the Sky unwrapped, its blueness
transforming into liquid, the liquid becoming
teardrops which the Sky allowed to fall to earth.
The Sky’s heart swelled as he watched the
miracle of creation being performed by God.
God, never one for waste, used those
tears mixing dirt into mud, molding
mud into man. Man was the most
beautiful of His creations. God looked
at us and thought, perfect. The Sky looked
at us in awe, the weight and brightness
of his awe formed stars, his gift to the
world to honor the new beings.

I look at what we have become. Children
shooting children; kids now learn to duck
for cover. Teachers and parents debate the need
of self-defense courses for kids. State officials fight
over proposals to arm our educators. Reminiscent
of a novel, there’s spy poisoning on a city
street. Nerve gas used to silence a leak, with
no respect for life. No regret for death. Children
are sold into a new kind of slavery. Sex trafficking,
a tearing away of one’s self esteem, one’s future,
one’s soul. Where will it all end?

It raining again and I have to wonder, is it
just raindrops from a Sky still in awe of mankind,
celebrating our creation? Or is it the tears of a God
struggling to cope with a shattered heart?

..

Arlene Antoinette is a poet and lyricist. Additional pieces by her may be found at: Tuck Magazine and Little Rose Magazine.