SONG FOR THE SOUL
They told us lay back, watch the tide flow
Then we watched them as they walked away
When we look to the sea saw the waves form
Tsunami is coming our way
Sit down they say, but not today
FULL LYRICS HERE
A few years ago, I wrote about two different cities. I detailed the physical differences of these strikingly contrasting communities. One was seemingly paved in gold while the other in shambles. One caused joyous smiles when looked upon and the other incited fear. One had paved streets as the other was under constant construction. The people in one community understand red white and blue as the colors of festivity and congregation, while the other community sees these colors as punitive and terrifying. I described these two different cities because each one of them is a symbol of the racial divide in America. And with divide and injustice there is revolt and change. I wanted to bring attention to the people that reside in both communities who want to change this system. To change their societies for the better. To make their voices heard. The people that are on the prowl for social justice day and night. Endlessly and Heroically. This is the theme of my song Night Prowlers.
Some see the word prowl and think of a predator. In this case the Night Prowlers are predators of the current racist systems that destroy communities of color, more accurately the black community.
“Cause we're the Night Prowlers
We take what is ours
We make our own choices
We're lifting our voices
Don't mess with Night prowlers
By abusing the power
Don't take our voices
By making our choices”
The recent murder of George Floyd has caused protesters to congregate and address current unjust and racist institutions that thrive in the United States today, especially our police officers and judicial system. Black people and our allies are angered and frustrated by the constant harassment, brutality, and murder of our fellow brothers and sisters of color. We are sick of being stereotyped and targeted because of the color of our skin. Across the U.S. and across the world, people are coming together to make their voices heard. We are protesting against this racist system and refuse to have our voices stifled by policy makers that fail us time and time again. This song is a reminder of our story as Night Prowlers. It’s a call to assemble in droves and fight for equality and justice. So be a Night Prowler and be proud.
Still I Rise
BY MAYA ANGELOU
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
’Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.
Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?
Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
’Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history’s shame
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.