Slavery - The Middle Passage

The Middle Passage

Slavery belongs to dark times,
When humanity committed nefarious crimes,
And was without compassion,
For those who lived in a different fashion.

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1. Slavery

 

The Middle Passage

 

Slavery belongs to dark times,

When humanity committed nefarious crimes,

And was without compassion,

For those who lived in a different fashion.

 

We placed our brothers in ships packed full,

Set them on shelves like crates of wool.

Bought them in Africa for weapons of war,

And to violence and unrest we opened the door.

 

In the bowels of the ships they cried for help,

Sickly babes-in-arms just whelped.

They heard clanking chains and brutish sea waves,

And muttered prayers when close to the grave.

 

Starved just to preserve money and riches,

Trapped in conditions-dirtier than ditches.

Pierced by splinters, rubbed raw by rope,

Left to die with only a thimble of hope.

 

The little food given was eaten fast,

Devoured from hands almost clasped.

Men sat fearful and cramped together,

Their stomachs unsettled from the stormy weather.

 

Intoxicated by the stench of the blood,

And of acrid sweat there was quite a flood.

Human waste littered the floor,

Not cleaned for a month or more.

 

Life on slave ships was unbearably tough,

And, for many, it was too much.

Even at death the cruelty would not stop,

As into the sea the corpses would drop.

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