Indiana Daily Student

Black Voices: ‘Letter to George Floyd,’ a poem by Donyá Collins

Dear George, 


I’m sorry.

It seems to be the only thing I can say to you. To the idea of you.

I’m sorry almost a year has passed and justice hasn’t moved swiftly in what should be an open and shut case.


I’m sorry your skin is what people use to justify your murder.

That sick, disgusting people deem your life worthless, those same depraved people made jokes about your death.

Kneeling on each other’s necks as if your passing was anything to giggle about.


I’m sorry your death wasn’t enough to stop the bodies from dropping.


I’m sorry they used your past as an excuse, saying your past mistakes were worth your life.

Willing to, because of your skin tone, dismiss the fact that cops should be cops not judges, juries and executioners.

I’m sorry for the nightmare in which your death happened, no one deserves to die.


The very thing we teach our children to be afraid of is what happened to you. 


The audacity that they were afraid of you, but who murdered whom?

Whose blood is on whose hands?

See George, in your face, I see everyone I know.

I see my family, the family who I lost the same way your family lost you.

I see my brothers, uncles and cousins,

friends and distant relatives.


In you and in your murder I see everyone I love.


Because I know the odds are that everyone who looks like us is just as likely to get murdered as you were.

All it takes is one wrong encounter, guilty or not.

One wrong place, wrong time and it’s over.

But I do want you to know one thing.

You weren’t forgotten or added to the list of the fallen and dismissed.


Your death was felt worldwide.


We didn’t just stand by, we protested for months and when instigated we rioted. 

I can’t even be upset at that.

I’m willing to lose a couple buildings if it means bodies stop dropping if that’s what it takes.

I’m sorry some people deemed your memory, your murder not worth destroying some buildings over if necessary.


As if you weren’t worth way more. 


But we won’t forget you, we won’t forget you or the names on the ever growing list of hashtags. They fuel our movement in blood. But at the end of the day in the stark and silent hours of the night all I feel in my heart to tell you is this: I’m sorry.

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