Branded By An “X”

by Nubian Reign

In the heat of the streets in the middle of the night
Blaring SIRENS and blinding blue STROBE LIGHTS
Enough bloodbaths to fill 10,000 tubs
Dancing to the piercing BEATS of the Billy CLUBs 
What's your NAME girl? What's...your... LAST NAME?
Tracy Alyse MCKEVER... standing in shame
Branded with a mark that even Wall Street couldn't Trade 
GOVERNMENT classified and labeled as a slave
A PSEUDO NAME descended from a predecessor
Who according to BLOODLINES was not an ancestor
Breaking free from these chains... Just call me poetiCC-X
To represent the YOKE that once hung around this neck

Branded by the shame of a name
While walking through the fire of an acid rain
Drippin’ wet blooded tears we've shed
Like red raindrops falling on our black heads
From the Ivory to the East Coast we bled
Tracing back a long line of a people half bred
From 400 + years of a societal prosecution
To the ongoing war we still fight for absolution
Carrying names that still remain a mystery without solution
As we carve out fragments of our new existence
While struggling for understanding amidst the resistance
That co-signs our check while we still pay homage
By forging the signatures that still mark the history of our bondage

To my surprise
In the marathon of my rise to manhood
Was the revelation inside
That the titled foundation that stabilized my pride
To give me identity
Was not ideally meant for me 
As my mind assumed something so simple 
Could not be uplifted from the African temple from which I came 
In a day where a name today holds the ability to buy many things
I bring a revised copy of the Emancipation along with the keys to this binding gate of barbed wire 
Alphabets in sequence hence the last letter Z is known for sleep 
Yet we are avoided by rest weeping for those who tried to find a meaning of self that they could 

Freedom taken identity stolen
Brought to a land were I have no control in
To be named like an animal
Caged like a bird
What's your name boy I have no words
Could it be I don't know who I am
Or is it that I am the original man 
Brought to this land to labor and save
But yet my name is one of a slave
Last name White but not by choice
Feel me now and hear my voice

Who am I you ask
Carrying a name in a flask
Lineage unknown
Disconnected like a phone
I want to share with my off springs
More than just Martin Luther King
That “X” stands for unknown
Wishing you could clone
All that you have lost
Your ancestors sprinkled like moth
The subject of reparations has become mute
Like a plant with no roots
A puzzle with no pieces
A student with no thesis
If I don’t know where I’ve been
How will I know what’s next
This is how it is…..when you’re
‘Branded By An “X” ‘

Branded By An “X” by Nubian Reign: Tracy McKever, Brett Bonner, LaVerne Prade, Doc Williams and RiP

© Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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