The Death of Innocence


I usually don’t like to talk about things like this but I feel like this needs to be addressed.

As you all probably know by now, George Zimmerman was found not guilty of all charges. Social media exploded with reaction to the verdict and it doesn’t seem like the sour sentiment will go away any time soon. I’ve seen positive and negative messages from both sides of this ugly situation. I’ve seen people upset over people being upset about the verdict. Either way, you get tired of arguing with people who you know won’t see any other view but their own. The unfortunate fact is that people are going to see what they want to see.

Whether you believe he was guilty or not, whether you believe Trayvon Martin was a thug or Zimmerman a crazed lunatic, whether or if this was racial or not, the chilling facts remain. An unarmed teenager who was minding his own business is dead. And his killer is walking free.

I know Trayvon is not the first innocent child to be murdered. Unfortunately he won’t be the last.  So I wrote this poem to commemorate ALL children and teenagers who will never be able to grow up because of an act of senseless violence.

 

 The Death of Innocence 

I never asked to be brought into this world.

But I’m here.

If I reach the end of my life early

Who will shed a tear?

My parents warn me of stranger danger.

To keep my enemies close and my friends near.

When will they take me out?

My first, twelfth, or seventeenth year?

They say you’re childhood is over

The moment you know you’re going to die.

By that standard

Age 8 was the end of mine.

But what is death to a child?

We don’t know what it really means.

We think we’re going to live forever like vampires

Cause our favorite characters are resurrected on the TV screen.

They tell me to love my neighbors

But my neighbors don’t love me.

I’m constantly pressured to hide who I am

When all I want to do is be.

Strangers and neighbors judge me

For smoking weed and having my middle finger high.

For taking pictures with a gun

I deserve to die.

I’m a troubled youth

If I curse, smoke or drink.

I’m always criticized

For the things I say and think.

I’m considered a nerd

If I prefer to read or study.

I’m always criticized

If I don’t hang with anybody.

I’m considered an immoral slut

If I show off my body.

If I stand out I’m criticized

For not being a carbon copy.

I’m bound to make mistakes.

I never claimed to be a perfect child.

I should be given a chance

Instead of categorized or profiled.

I shouldn’t be murdered for my possessions

The color of my skin or sexual orientation.

I shouldn’t be assassinated

Because I am the future of this nation.

I have the right

To walk down the street safely.

To live in peace

With no one to hate me.

But some of us will never know

What it’s like to be free.

To live a happy existence

Respectfully and peacefully.

Some of us will never grow up.

We will never go to school.

We will never get to fall in love.

We will never get to be cool.

Some us will never have the chance

To raise sons or daughters.

To atone for our mistakes

And become better mothers and fathers.

We will never have careers.

We will never impact the world.

Our voices have been silenced.

We will never be heard.

I never asked to be brought into this world.

But I’m here.

If I reach the end of my life early

Who will shed a tear?

2 thoughts on “The Death of Innocence

    1. I agree. Reading and seeing reaction to the verdict and the follow up interviews have also been rough. It’s hard to believe so many people are walking around with so much hate in their hearts.

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