04 December 2014

Larry (poem)

I wrote this in the spring of 1997, in honor of Larry Isaac Powell, 28, an black man beaten by seven officers, all white, from the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office and the Soddy-Daisy Police Department after being pulled over on suspicion of DUI on Highway 27 in the northern part of the county on 3 February 1993.  Two of the officers choked him to death, one with a hand around the front of his throat, the other with a baton from behind.  I'm posting it now in memory of Eric Garner.

Seven blue uniforms
One man on the ground
Hands cuffed behind him
Dead from strangulation

Whose fingers left their marks
Along your windpipe
Whose baton imprinted itself
On the back of your neck

Many years ago you died
And still no one had paid
Until there is justice in this town
There’ll be no peace of heart or mind

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