In the wake of Dr. King receiving an honor only bestowed upon the likes of presidential recipients with names like Lincoln, Washington and Jefferson in this great nation of ours and as throngs of people take to the streets for the “little guy,” I humbly submit this poem that shares some thoughts on how the MLK image gets a bad name instead of what the man’s legacy truly should be to us who still live here today.
Someone made a martyr out of Martin
Before they made him a hero.
They sought to make a mockery of Martin.
They tried to make more of him being a man
Than a man with a vision
Or a man with a heart for his people,
Even all people.
I have heard it said
That Martin was foolish
But I saw him as faithful.
I have seen many use his name
Without any regard for what he did
Or what he stood for
As a man
Or as a minister.
Someone forgot that Martin made a difference
And gave a voice to the oppressed.
Someone forgot that Martin stood up
For those who had been beaten down.
Someone neglected that Martin gave of himself
And asked and encouraged others to do likewise.
Someone overlooked that Martin saw the value of people.
Martin spoke words of wisdom
That overflowed with compassion.
Martin walked in the shoes of the poor
And stood tall against the establishment.
Martin lived as a giant among men
Despite what they said about him
And in spite of what they did to him.
Someone lied on Martin.
Someone talked about Martin.
Someone slandered Martin.
Someone threatened Martin.
Someone attacked Martin.
Someone attacked his home
And threatened Martin’s family.
Someone accused Martin of false things
And false sayings.
Someone beat Martin.
Someone arrested Martin
And kept him behind bars
Like a common criminal.
Someone stabbed Martin.
Someone shot Martin.
Someone murdered Martin.
Someone has to say something
Beyond Martin having a dream
And speak out amid the silence.
Someone has to honor Martin
Worthy of his name.
Someone needs to share memories of Martin.
Someone has to recite Martin.
Someone has to live like Martin.
Someone has to speak like Martin.
Someone has to see things like Martin.
Someone has to dream like Martin.
They murdered Martin
But we must live the dream.
They made a massacre of Martin’s life
But we must not leave Martin as a martyr.
We must make Martin more than a memory.
We must make Martin memorable.
We must make Martin more than a monument.
We must make Martin monumental.
We must remember the dream.
We must dream the dream.
We must live the dream.
We must be the dream.