Are You Sure We're American? by Joshua Grice

I walk home to the sweet aroma of barbecue.

On the day we call America’s Birthday.

But my friend walks on America’s Birthday too.

For the last time.

Bang. Bang. Bang.


In quick succession he is dropped off.

His blue jeans bleed a burgundy red of regret and rage.

His brown eyes show an empty void of a life that was taken because

of a misapprehension

His brown skin loses all his beauty to the hands of the system

Sirens are flaring, people are screaming, but is justice being served?


On judgement day, I can hear it once more.

Bang. Bang. Bang.

It rang in my head like a school bell.

The man smiled a crooked smile like he had already won.

He did.


His mother cried.

The same crooked smile was apparent.

I looked up at the flag and contemplated it’s meaning for us

One thing materialized in my mind.

Will we ever be American?


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