They handcuffed the black baby the second it left the womb,
Replaced its umbilical cord
With a chain attached to the wall.
“Well”, they reasoned, “it can’t get used to freedom;
Once it’s set free, it will attack.
A SWAT team watching its cot,
And a drone sneering overhead
As its mother combs the hair of this sighing, gurgling threat.”
All in all, they say, “that police officer, Casebolt,
Did one thing wrong; he got there too late.
He should have pulled that gun on that girl
When her mother was eight months pregnant with her,
Should have pinned her down in the ward
And warned her of the angry cargo she was carrying,
Who might, fifteen years later,
Slip on a bikini and wander lethal as anthrax
Across a white suburban lawn.
Eric Casebolt did nothing but obey one whispered law:
That the birth of each black baby
Is a fresh declaration of war.”