it’s the perfect spell, the perfect killing tool, the killing machine.
one million african americans are in u.s. prisons, 400,000 latinos.
they said the war on drugs was a war on the poor, because the institutions are inhabited by the apartheid imagination.
i place this line against the apartheid imagination.
the apartheid imagination requires no location, no physical body; because it has laws, records, court buildings, cells, conversations and life.
it has radio programs, all-white movies, jailhouse mythologies, 2-D images.
before the latest killings started, it was there, and when the killers are forgotten, the apartheid imagination goes on thinking, dreaming up new killers.
who remembers the ones who killed emmet till, medgar evers and fred hampton?
who remembers the guy who shot renisha mcbride?
who cares about aryan nation jason ‘gunny’ bush who executed jonathan bumstead of the aryan nation also of wenatchee wa for being a ‘race traitor’ and who shot 9 year old brisenia flores in the face in arivaca az?
who remembers the men of the 11th infantry brigade who machine-gunned the women and children in the ditches of my lai? who remembers names of soldiers of the 7th cavalry who received the national medal of honor for slaughtering 300 men, women and children at wounded knee?
who bothers to remember james earl ray?
who remembers the massacre sites of california?
i place this line in front of the images of trayvon martin, of jordan davis.
i place this line at the images of muhammad al-durrah, iman darweesh al hams, wajih ramahi.
i place this line alongside the images of abdulrahman al-awlaki and brisenia flores.
i place this line transparently over the names of jose antonio elena rodriguez, sergio hernandez gueraca, ramses barron torres.
they were shot by the border patrol, walking or running, shot in the back.
they were killed by israeli forces using 3.1 billion dollars in 2013 u.s. military aid.
they were blown apart by a CIA drone firing a $70,000 agm-114 hellfire missile into a cafe.
they were killed by racists operating out of the apartheid imagination.
the apartheid imagination was created by genocide against indians and slavery of africans as a construction designed to kill white conscience and memory.
anyone entering into the apartheid imagination is a white man or an indian or a rebel slave.
it’s an indelible binary machine lynching anyone designed other, providing instant justifications and illusions for the killers.
it uses a hegemony of all-white images to convince white people any interest they may have is worth more than any life identified as other. it’s a strong mechanism for killing people around the world like indonesia, rwanda, palestine or india.
i have stood in the line for black and brown people at traffic court when i was the whitest one there, and the judge, an asian american guy substituting for the regular judge who was on holiday let everyone go without a fine.
i have stood in my mom’s kitchen window on a hill in the city terrace and watched the pillars of smoke rising for days over the city of los angeles.
i have stood at the counter in the laundry of the men’s county jail downtown in the fumes of dry cleaning chemicals handing out and collecting bags of laundry and seen the faces of the men in line (where one guy always comes along trying to look like a stone killer and says, “pass me some fucking money or i will fuck you up,” and maybe he was a stone killer, but i just returned his stare and took the next guy’s bag).
i have waited in the plastic chairs and long lines of the DMV and i have seen who is waiting.
i’ve had lacerations cleaned out, my face x-rayed and patched up in the ER at county general hospital and seen who is waiting.
i have read poems in front of crowds of hundreds in universities from sf state to naropa, from university of minnsota to suny buffalo and i have looked out on those faces and seen who is walking across the campus at hunters college and cal state fullerton, at the state colleges and the private colleges.
i have seen who is in the jail and in the court house line, who is waiting for a job outside home depot and orchard supply.
i’ve driven streets of towns of the hinterland where white teenagers scream something out of their cars and race away.
fuck the apartheid imagination, that’s what i’m saying, death to the apartheid imagination and its english courses and its ideologies taught in the universities and churches, piss on the all white movies pretending to be set in an all-white los angeles, all-white calif., all-white america, piss on the the norton anthology of post modern all white poetry and the norton anthology of all white american hybrid poetry, piss on all the little cliques of literati publishing all-white catalogs (with maybe one or 2 tokens) and touting another white guy as the latest wonderful thing (that thing is old, it’s so old now), arnold schwarzenegger and ronald reagan were your fleeting white icons of pre-eminence, they were happy to see half my family two generations dispossessed and sent to live in horse stalls of santa anita racetrack and colorado river internment camps, happy to go along with lives being destroyed, happy to sign some apology letters decades later, put up a few plaques on historical sites out in the desert.
who remembers individuals operating behind the poison alzheimer’s of the apartheid imagination?
who shall remember the mushroom cloud of the apartheid imagination when the next killers are shooting, murder a child in the headlines, and the people post and repost all the images, talking laws, discussing footnotes and factoids?
the names are in the ground, the apartheid imagination like a shadow above them.
i place this line in front of it saying my whole life has been against it, and the rest of my life will be against it.
i place this line in front of it.