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As Strong As Oak

A strong oak tree
Born and bred
On the very street
To where children would head
They’d climb up the tree
With its branches wide
And no skin color mattered
Only who you were inside
The tree did love those summer days
Sweet and lazily the children would play
The palest of skin and the lightest of hair
Intermingled with the darkest and no one showed care
But just like every summer, childhood must end
And into the real world, would the children descend
A world where black did not go with white
They didn’t look the same
So it just couldn’t be right
And most kids, they crossed over into this state of mind
Seeming to forget their childhood times
A poison that’s spread by the mouth and the brain
Where you can only be friends if you look the same
The kids grew and wouldn’t speak when they came to the street
Ignoring the old memories on the warm concrete
And once the innocent days bid the oak tree adieu
The once strong oak got weaker, its branches askew
It had lost its old luster without any love
And without a brave soul to rise above
To say “This isn’t right.” Or “What has happened to me?”
“I used to be happy, I used to be free.”
“I need to break free of the chains of hate.”
“That are weighing me down to a rotten new fate.”
“One where anger eats away at my own self inside.”
“I only hurt myself if I push some people aside.”
And because there were few that felt this inside
The tree, still very sick, didn’t yet die
And over time, as new children grew
More and more felt this inside too
Some even came out and spoke what they felt
Ready to deal with the trouble it spelt
Today the tree may be ill
But not as it had been
It can stand on its own, but its branches still bend
And the leaves are no more
But it can still be restored
If we behave as the children had
Way back when the world wasn’t half bad
If we stop seeing just color and stop seeing just face
It’s what’s in your heart
Not what’s in your race
We were born these ways for reasons
Of which I don’t know
But I do have a thought we all should follow
If we had not been created exactly as we stand
Nobody would be here, so let’s live hand in hand
Shield your eyes to skin
Open them to mind
Each person has feelings, so always be kind
At the end of the day will it really help you?
If you insult someone for how they look and what they do?
One day, we’ll look back on the words being said
Realizing it’s our job make prejudice dead
We should all love and all get along
A world singing to the tune of a brand new song
A song of joy and a song of care
A song of hope we all can share
An when that glorious day arrives
I have no doubt that the oak tree will always be alive




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