Aaron Levy Samuels

Aaron Levy Samuels is a writer, speaker, and co-founder of the digital community Blavity. His book of poetry, Yarmulkes & Fitted Caps, was published in fall 2013. Additional print poems and videos can be found on his website.

from “Ritual,” poetry and dance collaboration

We don’t say goodbye, we remember….

We don’t dance, our bodies become ritual
as we leap and hold each breath and
wait to see if a ghost knocks on the door
to tell us the new world has arrived
and in that moment we are one body
martyr and slave and broken system and storyteller.
each year this is our ritual
to say here here marks the place we did not die

from “Covered in Grass”

Being Black means my family came to New York
with to ties but the chains around their necks
Being Jewish means my family came to New York
with no history but the stars around their necks
Being Black means that I don’t have a home anymore
Being Jewish means that I never did
Being Black and Jewish means that my family tree
does not have headstones
My past has been swept into rivers and covered with grass
When I say that I am Black and Jewish
What I mean is that every day I carry the burden
of those who died in order for me to breathe
….
From Brooklyn
to Egypt
the history of my people is a pauper’s field
and I am the headstone

Samuels Grass

Still from “Covered in Grass” by Aaron Levy Samuels

 

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