Nineteen years, nineteen more
nineteen times dragged to the floor
Nineteen children dragged away
by nineteen others, one fine day.
Nineteen denials turn your head
nineteen bodies on tracks found dead.
Nineteen Police around the bend
just in case you’re with a friend.
Nineteen grave sites, nineteen mothers
burying daughters, sons and brothers.
Nineteen arrests between dusk and dawn
nineteen handcuffs on the lawn.
Nineteen songs, nineteen dances,
from far horizons come nineteen glances.
Nineteen smells of dust and sand,
nineteen thousand years on land.
Nineteen chains, on nineteen collars,
white men masquerade as scholars.
Nineteen jail cells filled with kids,
nineteen reasons to bang on lids.
Nineteen ways of being told,
nineteen dollars made to look like gold.
nineteen others, granted bail,
nineteen brothers back in jail.
Nineteen verses for the nation
sung for moral appropriation.
nineteen claims of waste and greed,
nineteen ways to make us bleed.
Nineteen yarns of dreamtime birds
nineteen thousand wasted words.
Nineteen teachers read from a book
about a man, a man named Cook.
Nineteen colours in our skin,
nineteen angles to shine light in.
Nineteen students graduate,
no time to waste or vacillate.
Nineteen eyes preventing trouble,
watching from inside their bubble.
Nineteen more who walk on by,
the grapes in season are worth a try.
Nineteen lists of nineteen streets,
nineteen cops mark out their beats.
Nineteen lawyers work through the night,
nineteen sticks of dynamite.
Nineteen bodies in the ground,
nineteen bodies never found.
Nineteen berries, nineteen plants,
cook them, eat them, sing and dance.
Nineteen reasons to sit and learn,
nineteen ways to make country burn.
Nineteen seasons on land and sea,
nineteen steps between you and me.