Hear Me by JaNell Gore

July 7, 2020 /

Why are we rioting? 

Why are we turning to violence?

How DARE we fight fire with fire?


We are rebelling.

We are taking over the violence.

We are controlling the fire. 

We will no longer sit in silence 

We are screaming and yelling 

As a reminder 

A reminder that our lungs can still fill with air 

Unlike so many of our others 

See, we had to watch too many brothers and sisters take their last breath

Screeching for help and you acting like you didn’t hear them 

You’re going to hear us when we say we can breathe

And I will fight you 

I will use my voice until it shatters 

I will continue to fill my lungs up with the will to keep going 

I will not stop until you’re stopped 

Since there is no reason I should be afraid to bear a child 

Knowing they will be black

And my fear being that they’ll have you in charge of kneeling on 

I mean — watching their back 

Breaking your neck every time they pass by you

Like it’s not my child that should be afraid 

Knowing that with one quick movement you might be breaking their neck 

Don’t tell me to calm down

Don’t tell me to be quiet

And definitely don’t tell me all lives matter

As you treat my people like we ain’t physical matter just like you 

Stop bringing up black on black crime as an excuse 

Understand the difference 

Each time you kill one of my brothers 

Every time we watch you stand over their body

We have to fight and protest for you to lose a job

We don’t have that. 

See, if we killed each other as openly as you kill us

We’d be found guilty before the rest of the world even found out about the body

As it should be 

But see you?

It’s going to take however long it takes for us to make a scene 

For them to even look at our death as a crime scene 

Yet you want me to sit silently voluntarily 

Let you live for taking my people’s lives peacefully 

I don’t think so

Imma keep going until you tell me you hear me 

Tell me your hear me 

My people will get louder until you hear us

Until you understand us 

Until you stop killing us 

Tell me you hear this 

Tell me you hear me 

You hear us screaming even when we sit silently 

You hear my soul screaming 

Listening to the pain in my inhales

Listen to the exhaustion in every exhale I take

My people are tired of fighting this fight 

But we will continue until it is fixed 

We will continue until we no longer feel defenseless 

Tell me you hear me

Tell me you understand us 

Tell me you’ll stop killing us

Tell me you hear me 


Tell me you hear me

JaNell Gore

Ja'Nell Gore is a student at Cal State Bakersfield. In addition to writing for Kern Sol News she is a poet who loves any chance she has to perform and be with her community.