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Death Toll (2015)

I once said before, 

We hold each breath close 

like Uncle Sam holds 

political prisoners on death row. 

He scared to let go 

he fears the power 

of the child of the ghetto 

but this death toll 

is at my threshold 

and if you didn't know 

this being black in America ish is stressful.

Never knowing what's gonna happen when you set forth 

and you step forth from your front porch. 

Maybe that's the reason 

why I'm contemplating death more. 


what's it gonna feel like when my flesh cold 

and they put my body in that fresh hole, 

and I hate being so necro 

but negroes and death go 

hand in hand 

like young kids back in the day used to thumb wrestle, 

that grim reaper be on our back like an echo





I've seen police choke a nigga until his breath go


I seen them point that glock at his top 

cock back that shot 

and then let go. 

Cop must've thought he had a bulletproof dome like Destro 

That boy had locks with a front license plate in his glove box 

so tell me what he dead for.

I seen them arrest a sister for failing to signal 

while driving through a pedzone. 

It should've been a citation 

still they took her to jail 

and 3 days later she dead though. 

And they think we dumb enough to believe 

that suicide is the reason why we putting flowers at her headstone

I seen them shoot a man shopping at Walmart 

for an air rifle outside of Dayton metro.

Cops magically appear on the scene 

with their guns out like presto.

Shots get fired while he looking at them falling price specials.

Now he at a morgue, under a white sheet 

with a tag on his left toe

That's that Death Toll. 

These American streets are a morbid expo 

of lifeless Black bodies lying exposed. 

And then they quick to be on some, "Oh no, this ain't no retro Jim Crow" 

but we know this that new version


Michelle Alexander already said so.

And this right here is my manifesto


We sick and tried of dying 

we putting an end to dying, 

Either by our hands 

or the hands of that white violence. 

And I know I have some agency 

over this hate in me 

but I experience a little bit of latency 

when I think about that white boy

and those 9 that he killed up at the AME. 

You can look at my face and see 

Black rage in the place to be. 

What do you expect 

when y'all doing this so blatantly? 

My country, tis of thee 

you have made me a strange and bitter fruit 

which you harvest from your tree of liberty. 

Roots are buried deep beneath the soil, 

four hundred years of racial terrorism and turmoil. 

Better be careful before this melting pot turns to boil. 


You are not equipped with empathy, 

you do not have the capacity to change. 

You are so thoroughly programmed 

that you cannot see the error of your ways. 

And my people have changed. 

This ain't that docile, hat in hand 

Stepin Fetchit step to the side. 

We the Wretched of the Earth, 

with a ratchet tucked 

West Side til we die. 

And my people are already accustomed to dying for no reason. 

And once these lines remove the poison 

and blindfolds from my people's minds 

whose favorite past time is killing they own kind 

they gonna want to get even.


So what does this mean for America as a whole? 

Keep killing our people, stealing those that we love from our homes, 

and you'll leave us with no choice 

but to show America the true definition of a Death Toll. 

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