For Black Poets Who Think of Suicide

Etheridge Knight

Black Poets should live-not leap
From steel bridges (Like the white boys do.
Black Poets should live-not lay
Their necks on railroad tracks (like the white boys do.
Black Poets should seek -but not search too much
In sweet dark caves, nor hunt for snipe
Down psychic trails (like the white boys do.

For Black Poets belong to Black People. Are
The Flutes of Black Lovers. Are
The Organs of Black Sorrows. Are
The Trumpets of Black Warriors.
Let All Black poets die as trumpets,
And be buried in the dust of marching feet.

Last updated December 15, 2022