I Cannot Stand in Silence: An Original Poem

"I Cannot Stand in Silence"

I cannot stand in silence.

I will not retreat.

I will not back down

Even as I frown at

Your neglect for humanity.


~
We must protect

Our neighbors and our strangers,

Our similarities and our differences,

Our contemporaries and our futures.


~
I will be

Loud, vociferous, proud

Until I lay my head down.


~
I will protest

Through pain, suffering, and

Your sheer disregard for humanity.


~
I will rise, I will stand, and I will fight

In homage and memory of

Maya Angelou, Martin Luther King, Jr.,

Susan B. Anthony, Harvey Milk,

Nelson Mandela, Elie Wiesel,

And the thousands of others who came before me.


~
I reject the

Homogenization of humanity.

We are global, we are vocal,

We are strong, we are diverse.

We must embrace our differences

----Our scars, our wrinkles,

Our mannerisms, our struggles,

Our skin.


~
No one is the same.

No one deserves neglect.

Everyone deserves civil liberties and rights.

Beyond the religions, the nationalities,

the ethnicities, the classes, the identities,

We are one,

We are equals,

We are human.


~
I cannot stand in silence.

I will not retreat.

I will not back down

Even as I frown at

Your neglect of humanity.

Patrick H. Salkeld, 1/12/2017
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