At Then End of My Master’s Whip


(Part II of 12 Years a Slave)

At the end of my master's whip are pieces of my skin
as he yells out to the crowd screaming payment for my sin
some hours later as my people sit and clean my wounds
as the wet cloth touches me I wince in searing pain;
I fear one more touch will surely make me go insane
each cut deeper than the last, layered over others from years of slashes
some of my people weren't strong enough to take it and died
thrown in ditches and burned to ashes
I used to be a free man, had my papers of freedom for me, my wife and kids
but men came and tricked me back into slavery for twelve long years
I've been whipped so much and for so long I cannot produce anymore tears
God gave me talent as I rosin my bow and play their tunes
they dance and prance around the crackling fire under the lit moon
I look about and see no escape for if my master could even read my thoughts
he would rip them from my mind definitely sealing my fate
oh my master reads the Bible and picks through the scriptures that fits his home
for it is me and my people he owns. he can do what he chooses and pleases as it tells
him in the Word so he says, he makes sure he scurries about the yard quoting this
scripture and that; when my master looks out over all his people; property
he lets out a big loud laugh
The blessing came as one white man believed me! I pleaded with him to send word to
the north to let my family know my whereabouts and the day did come
as I worked in the fields a new wind blew my way and I saw riders coming up the drive
a man walked my way calling out my name, I knew at the very moment my life was about to change
my master ran out blabbing and grabbing screaming I was his property as the other man
stating he was there on official business
I entered the carriage and started down the drive I looked back and saw my people in the distance, pain hit me harder
than I could ever image knowing I could not help them
guilt ridden as I was free again
I was finally reunited with my wife, son, daughter her husband and son
no matter what I have endured my life was not done
He isn't my master I know when he goes to clean is whip he will see my skin
he will remember and think of me once again
He did not break me as he thought he would his time will come
He will answer to his master and he will answer to the one true Son.

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