Yes, We Can – A Poem

Back in February, Detroit City of Hope held two events called MLK’s Words, Our Conversations. Those that gathered explored how Martin Luther King’s legacy should impact our current work in Detroit. During the event, we divided into small groups and used activities to engage certain themes. Those of us in the writing/theater group reflected on what Obama’s message, “Yes we can,” means to each of us in concrete ways. The result of our collective writing process is this poem which we performed later that night for the drawing and talking groups. I post this poem on this week of the 40th anniversary of MLK’s assassination as a reminder that we must build the revolution of values that Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke of before he died.

Yes, I can be a statistic and still rock my world.
Yes, I can get up and turn Fox News off!
Yes, we can.
Yes, I can use one hand of mine for helping myself
and the other one for helping others.
Yes, I can work with my hands and my heart.
Yes, I can help in educating people to take care of the environment.
Yes, we can.
Yes, I can move forward without making the same mistakes.
Yes, I can see possibilities out of despair.
Yes, I can look at the footprints of my ancestors.
Yes, I can grow roots of energy out of the bottom of my feet.
Yes, I can walk at night, alone and unafraid.
Yes, we can.
Yes, I can be more health conscientious.
Yes, I can eat a veggie burger even though it tastes like cardboard!
Yes, I can still love people even though they hate on vegetarians
Yes, we can.
Yes, I can bike everywhere.
Yes, I can dance like wild in front of my mirror.
Yes, I can make Republicans laugh!

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