Sometimes change comes
As if by accident; some unexpected tectonic event,
A paradigm shift that moves the quaking earth beneath our feet.
The shift is sudden, or so it seems,
Anticipated by no one
And most especially not by evolutionary men,
Fossils who have grown feathers
And have lived as oblivious ostriches.
These men's bigoted heads have been buried
In the sand of denial for centuries.
These Neanderthals, living in the caves of the past,
Had never been emancipated
From the chains of hate that bind them.
They are the offspring of hieroglyphs
And have never recognized that
The handwriting on the wall spelled equality.

When these 'so-called' men
Pull their hooded heads
Out of the sand and look around
They shall be witnesses against themselves,
And willingly or not, on that guilty day,
They will confess and admit that, indeed,
                    "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag"
And, furthermore,
That mournful song of Old Black Joe
Will have become a new song.
It will be the joyful sound of the unshackled singing:

"I'm Black and I'm Proud"
"I'm Black and I'm Proud"
Say it loud, "I'm Black and I'm Proud."

About the Poet

A husband, father and grandfather, Richard Ilnicki has been writing seriously since 1969. A book of poems about The Holocaust can be found in the Holocaust Memorial Museum Library in Washington, D.C. and the library of Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. The manager of a health club and a personal trainer, he writes in his spare time. His best friend is his dog, Jimmy, a miniature Schnauzer.