Domino Effect

Tami Sawyer—

A Tennessee legend—

Met her biggest adversary in a park,

Sized him up good with tearful eyes:

Slave trader,

Confederate Army General,

The first Klansman

Nathan Bedford Forrest.

Some things had to give.

Tami Sawyer

Made loud, sufficient noise

In her hometown of Memphis

In marshalling together youth & elders

In removing the toxicity of ages,

Graven blight,

Cleared the pedestals

Once and forever

Of racist trash.


Rednecks curse.


Anti-racists curse back.

Tami Sawyer

Knew, as her allies did, that

Rule by fear must end, starting when

Certain venerated idols cease to stand.

A single push

Toppled over one,

Then the rest

Fall like bronze and stone-carved


Dee Allen is an African-Italian performance poet based in Oakland, California. Active in creative writing and spoken word since the early 1990’s, he is the author of seven books–Boneyard, Unwritten Law, Stormwater, Skeletal Black (all from POOR Press), Elohi Unitsi (Conviction 2 Change Publishing), including his two most recent, Rusty Gallows: Passages Against Hate (Vagabond Books) and Plans (Nomadic Press). He has fifty-three anthology appearances to date.

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