Our D-Day

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Our D-Day by Joelle Reiter - Photo by Marika Campbell-Blue

As the screams
and laughs of joy
from outside march in
through gaping holes,
grown larger only now
Past our scheming tyrant
I wonder

Is this America?

As a white man
with a paling face,
declares he will
represent all of
our country
I want to know

Is he America?

Is it the relieved,
bright, blurred
eyes of our modern day
soldiers’ wives
and their proclamations of
a democracy saved?

Is my joy America?

Or is it the grown men
with the guns
surrounded by red and
consumed by misfired anger?

My textbook says that America
is freedom
and individualism

I want caring for others to be America

Because those men
with the guns
They may be America
And the paling-faced savior
He may be America

But We are America, too.

We, who have grown
alongside the
internet & fascism
We, who have
made our choice now
and spent our years
battling the
pollution in our air, the
weapons in our schools, the
virus in our homes

The world you built
for us may not be America.
But don’t fret,
we are already making our own.

What do you think about this topic? We want to hear from you!
Join the conversation!
Joelle Reiter
Joelle Reiter is a high school junior who is homeschooled and lives on the south side of Chicago, Illinois. She currently serves on The Steppenwolf Theatre’s Young Adult Council, is a Goodman Theatre Young Critic and is a member of 826CHI Teen Writers Studio where her writing is published in their chapbook Let Us Keep What We Love. Her passions include many forms of storytelling, health sciences, and social justice.
Accompanying photo: “Trash” by Marika Campbell-Blue