The Forced Eviction of Injustice

Oh, how we wept.
A Pittsburgh apartment building, most of us
working, proud but without major money, middle
classed, not affluent at our core.

A rich man who believed in "urban renewal"
purchased the building and wanted all
of us out..
No one making us "whole."

Oh, how the tenants scurried to pack, to find
somewhere to not end up homeless but
Some way to not end up suffering while having the
means and method not to suffer, the protection
of three months notification thrown to the winds by
a greedy landlord and an impatient buyer.

I, older and alone, living in a different part of
the building didn’t know how quickly the others had fled.
But, I heard the air in the building whistle like ghosts
through the completely empty apartments, the
land lord finally telling me gently, "Romella, everyone else is
gone, Sweet heart. Gone."
So, I said goodbye to the walls, the floors, the grackle birds, the royal Ravens, the ground doves, a large refrigerator, the only bath tub
I ever felt secure enough to sleep in, to read poems in while taking a bubble bath.
After I moved, I went back and the large oak tree on the yard
which had been there for generations had been cut down, very much a murder, only its stump left...
All of the living creatures who made their homes within that ancient oak evicted, fleeing for their lives.
I moved but missed what I called home when new neighbors called me racial slurs, when there was no refrigerator except what I could afford,
although one is supposed to be provided.

When trash and angry drivers greeted me outside, and the police in swat gear banged on my new living arrangement's door, thinking my
address had to be where the criminals they sought lived, yet, it was only me in residence, their address information wrong I felt
endangered and missed my past life any more.
I moved, but still remembered evenings walking home and stopping on the far sidewalk of that tree lined street to take in the magical scent
of a lilac bush. The wonder of the moon framed by trees.

I can still cry. The other tenants can still cry. But Black or White without out known status or powerful connections no one would care...We were whistling wind, soft howls and sobs in the emptied out corridors of a past existence.

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