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Pitt County Confederate Soldier Monument located in front of the Pitt County Courthouse, Greenville, NC
Removal of a Confederate Monument in North Carolina

In Those Old Temples

I hear there is fear

Those who desire to stay

And even watch some be  slayed

From the comfort of their chairs

Saying there are “bigger fish to fry”

Than a rock, a piece of stone, let alone

Should anyone risk life, limb, or reputation

Trying to remove the bastions of our “Southern Nation” 

That repressive obsessive Confederation 

Never moving foot nor fingers nor pen to protest

In those old temples

Mouths form and rhetoric spills

Wrapped in ideas, overly pedantic and frantic

Expressing the fear

of what one word beyond the status quo will mean

Frightened by revolutionary freedom fighters and Tiki Torcher dreams

Glued to couches and computers focused on screens

And overly concerned about what this insistence means

And what friends will think from post, comment, or like

Lurking silently, watching the gory

 Existing in a land of double-minded glory

In stasis, hopefully never to be perceived as liberal revolutionary or racist

Sitting in those old temples

Afraid that the upheaval of the believers will create a confusion 

Based on the conclusion that a collusion of ideas 

Will tear down some peaceful salvation

But salvation cannot exist with justice

Especially if the justice to be had is not withheld from everyone-Just Us

In those old temples

There is a fate worse than death

It is the sacrifice of a brilliant afterlife

All because we couldn’t love each other enough to stomp out each other’s strife

So in a New Temple of Societal Sanctification

Fear and these manmade monuments must die

For in the words of my elders, “God can’t use no coward soldiers”

And we all have gifts enough to spare to make this world aware 

After the dust settles

In a New Temple…

These monuments must lift up

Reformed, Repurposed, Re-stationed

So that my God, creator of all mankind, can show us a new nation

In a New Temple…

Therefore I am charged to  walk in my calling, as you are in yours

Daughter of Griots and Healers

Born from empathic feelers

Down through generations 

From both those who received and offered degradation

In a New Temple…

We come

Prophets offering

Truth and pointing towards redemption

Whispering Incantations of inspiration

Rituals to rise

Pouring sweet libations

As we melt down Hate’s desperate cry

In a New Temple…

We moan a litany of love

Poured from our lips over

Monuments of stone

And rigid concrete minds

Those that force us into dark corners, all alone

In a New Temple…

 Those mausoleums in human form

 That were built and maintained from fear and formed to despise

Me, any of my brothers, my sisters, my family, my friends, mankind

Who have screamed out “I matter! We matter”

And wallowed in vain

Will finally feel a valued part of the land in which they remain

In our New Temple

We grind down ashen rock into into dust 

And then love it back together

Shaped in renewed mind and spirit

A picture of forever

In the New Temple

We dream it

We speak it

We walk it

We believe it

We protest it

We contest it

We pray for it

We live it

Go down, broken clay pot

And arise again

Something different

Something new

New legacy of freedom, justice, equality, unity

We protest until you do

We protest until you do

Regina YC Garcia