Black children and violence: A tragically common combination.
It's also the subject of Temitope Sholola's poem "Black bird," which artfully weaves together pain and love. She was recorded at the Massachusetts finals of "Louder Than A Bomb" on May 23. And her message deserves to be internalized by all:
She starts by lovingly describing her baby sister.
And then shifts her tone, pivoting to stories of young black victims of police violence.
Sholola then returns to her baby sister, expressing deep fear for her growing up in the shadow of police brutality and devaluation of black life.
Sholola's references to the value of black life and her repetition of the names of victims of police violence seem to be nods to both the #BlackLivesMatter and #SayHerName movements.