Ashley June Moore

life-long learner | lover of words | student of the Word

Lament for the Dead


I was recently invited to be part of a collaborative writing project with poets from all of the country called, “Lament for the Dead".

The organizers describe it as “an online community poetry project which will mark the death of every person killed by police this summer, and every police officer who loses life in the line of duty, with a poem.”

I was given 24 hours to write a poem for a victim in Farmersville, CA whose name wasn’t even known at the time.

Below is the poem I submitted to honor this young man’s life.

the world may never know your name*

the world may never know your name
no hashtags on twitter feeds
no protest signs or picket lines
and although silence is never an option
no facebook post will ever fully communicate your worth
to those who don’t have ears to hear
the cries of a mother
who has to remind herself to breathe
knowing that her boy has breathed his last

the world may never know your name
but you are valuable beyond measure, and

*We now know that his name was Estevan Andrade Gomez and he was 26 years old.



We mourn for sons yet unborn
And for daughters whose greatness would fill volumes
Were it not for the pages that have been torn
Our souls ache
From the agony of dreams too long deferred
From the pain of being dismissed, overlooked, and unheard

…are tired.

Worn out from the weight of history repeated
Jim Crow, steel bars, and Black bodies defeated
So we protest
With our hands up
Speak out
And stand up
Just us seeking justice
To bring every woman, man, and child up

The cries of a people
Whose backs bear scars that run as deep
As our bloodlines
A commodified culture
Auctioned off to the highest bidder
We can’t afford to forget
We MUST remember
And reclaim our collective consciousness
As we attempt to control the narrative
And insist that recognizing our dignity and worth
Is not an option,
But an imperative

So with heads held high
And unapologetic persistence
We will march on
And lift our voices
In active resistance
Inviting others to journey with us
‘Cause it feels like
If you’re not for us,
You’re against us
And silence speaks volumes
So reject apathy and fear
Because lives are on the line
Join the movement
This kairos moment
A historic
Appointed time.