Jordan Taylor placed 4th out of 30 in our Summer Poetry Contest and won $25. At just 17 years old she is making moves with the pen and has plans to do even more. Big shoutout to Jordan for being bold enough to send in her work. Her poem "Just A Little While Longer" really hit home. We hope to see her in the next contest.
I've been writing since fifth grade, so nearly seven years, However, I've recently gotten back into poetry at the beginning of this year with my school's Black History Month's African-American Read-In.
Bio: Jordan Brown (known professionally as Jordan Taylor) is a rising senior from Kansas City, Missouri, class of 2021. In addition to poetry, she enjoys writing short stories and novels with her first published book being "The Broken Vow of Silence". She also enjoys filmmaking. Jordan's goal with her writing and films is to promote the representation of different minorities and experiences.
Topic: The Voice of Today
"Just A Little While Longer"
As the world closes in and I find it harder and harder to breathe,
I think about the words said by my people before me:
“Hold on, just a little while longer.”
After centuries of being conventionally “free”,
those words still bring the same tears to my eyes that
my ancestors wept as we
lose our weak grip of conditional
“freedom and justice for all”,
falling helplessly to our knees.
The same knee Kapernick took against the knee that
Chauvin took that ended George Floyd’s life.
Only one was deemed “acceptable”.
He had an underlying condition.
Being black in America.
An all-consuming, deadly disease whose side effects include
rich melanated skin that others see as an immediate threat,
an amazing culture that continues to lead and innovate,
and getting a call that your only son was killed for having his music too loud.
Or for not signaling.
Or for going on a weekly run.
Or for just being
“Hold on, just a little while longer” I tell myself
as the 5-0 drives by me on the road, their fingers covered in the blood of my people.
They give me a wave with one hand and pull the trigger with the other,
protected by a badge of ignorance and the phrase
“Hold on just a little while longer” we’re told as we fight for equality,
The same hands in the air chanting “hands up don’t shoot” in the face of
government-paid assassins and murderers
are the same hands our ancestors used to dig their way to a captive freedom,
screaming “we shall overcome!”
“Hold on just a little while longer”
I hear it as my back cracks under the weight of
the world like the crack of the whip on my ancestor’s back,
and though I don’t have the scars on my back or the burns on my hands,
I have the bullet holes through my body and the bruises from the noose that I didn’t
put around my neck.
“Hold on just a little while longer.”
Longer has come and gone.
It took its last breaths with
And countless others who were holding on just
a little while longer.
It is now.
With our fists in the air and our heads held high,
we jolt the world awake,
our voices and cries become the alarm the world has been snoozing for the past
We are not threats.
We are not criminals.
We are not thugs.
We are powerful.
We are fighting.
We are black.
- Jordan Taylor
The first poem "Just A Little While Longer" is a poem that I wrote right after George Floyd was murdered. It was an emotional purge against people on social media belittling his death. I felt helpless and scared. I wanted to protest but I couldn't due to the protests in my city receiving violent responses from the police. So, I did the only thing I could do: I wrote a poem turning my pain into power. "Just A Little While Longer" is a poem that I'm beyond proud of.
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