I’m Pretty Sure It’s Not Called a “Race Card” Anymore

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Not that it was ever a real thing, just a stupid, superficial
critique, but that's in the past and we leave the past behind
until it’s repeated.

                              	       An interesting fact: German ancestry is 
              the most commonly held within the United States of America. 

It's 2016, and things are a-changing. All-American brands 
are speaking Spanish in their commercials. There are still 
Negroes in the White House that aren't buried in the walls:
seven years and running, seven years running, seven years.

               Something is happening here.

                                               	All this "Black Lives Matter"
barking: polls say that dog needs to be put down. Polls say
punch a protester in the face. Polls say go back to Mexico,
but you've actually never lived there. You've never actually
had an abortion, but you've survived a man's imperialistic
decision on more than one occasion, and may have to again,
and what then? 

                       		I used to think Reality TV wasn't real, but I 
               was wrong. Drama can never be faked.

                                                           	    Con men called out
a man running for president for being a con man and I didn't
laugh. I watched two pundits almost come to blows over the
KKK on a live broadcast; the black one wore glasses as I do 
when I want to see things clearly, but I took mine off, placed
my face in my hands then made a loud noise. Nobody came
to check on me.

                              	Imagine Donald Trump in a poker game.

She's half-right: America never stopped being great, if you 
had the proper pedigree. If I was born rich, I could afford to 
love my country "to pieces." 

                                                 	   Donald Trump, putting $200 
                 million on the table like it was nothing, can you picture that?

I consider my options: ballot or bullet. Rock and hard place: 
either ballot or bullet can and will be used against me in court
or outside of it; a certain court of law already cut off the legs 
of the Voting Rights Act anyway, but at least they let me keep 
my health care in case of the inevitable.

                                                           	      	Every single card in 
                  his hand is a "Trump card." 

                                          	Everything in my hands is a gun.
Every thought in my head is a phobia. Every ounce of my heart
is either muscle or blood. Every piece of my soul comes from a
larger piece, is a shard of a shard. 

                      			       	                He's playing his cards right. 
                  He’s making this country “great again.” He’s taking it back-
                  wards: this is a trust fall I can’t afford to take. Lord, take me.

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About Cortney Lamar Charleston

Cortney Lamar Charleston is a Cave Canem fellow and Pushcart Prize nominee living in Jersey City, NJ. His poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in Beloit Poetry Journal, Crab Orchard Review, Eleven Eleven, Hayden's Ferry Review, The Iowa Review, The Journal, Pleiades, Rattle, Spillway, TriQuarterly and elsewhere. View all posts by Cortney Lamar Charleston

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