When death knocks on the door, how will you respond.
He shook hands with the devil, and the devil won!
Jamal was on a collision course with life from the day of birth,
only twenty two years old before his greatest battle on earth.
He celebrated life though tomorrow never existed, and always had a smile just because he knew others would miss it.
Jamal had a swarm of friends he knew all by name, and they all adored him because he treated them all the same
yet, on that cold, bleak, rainy night, he would face his worse nightmare with no friends in sight.
Returning home from a basketball tournament to help house and feed the homeless, death came knocking in the pouring rain, traveling with an associate that claimed to be a friend, little did my unwittingly brother know he would let those demons in.
Next to the youngest of the family and a virgin to the streets, unwittingly he became a victim of his own calamity.
His guest ask for water and as he stood rinsing a glass, he said a breeze of uneasiness consumed him slowly as it pass,
he turned to see the young man with a three fifty seven in hand, then a voice shallow and tense said, all your money or your dead.
Jamal immediately obliged them though not done yet, the perpetrators had something else in mind to inflict.
They guided him at gun point to his back room silently and slow, both willing and eager to let their firearms go, forced him to pull his pants below his knees and tie them in a knot as they smirked excitedly,
as my brother sat there on the edge of the bed watching the escapade unfold, the silence in the room was worser than the cold, he sat there without speaking and must have wanted to shriek,
then he felt the heat of the first bullet as it exited his right butt cheek, in that moment of horror he leaped upon his feet, desperately trying to set his self free.
He plunged upon the larger one trying to get ahold of his gun, what my little brother didn't know then, was his downhill battle had just begun.
Both guns blazing from front to back, as he tried desperately to dodge the bullets from the vicious brutal attack.
Heat from the metal tore through his already wounded flesh, as he engaged the mental torment along with the physical crash.
The smaller one reloaded and tried to finish him in, but my brother could no longer feel the hot metal bursting through his skin, so he fought even harder though he knew he may not win.
As Jamal's strength begin to weaken, the intruder used the gun to lift his chin, in order to get a better angle on what he thought would be the end.
As they gazed into one another's eyes, that's when the heat begin to rise, my brother turned slightly as the bullet ruptured his jawbone, he said it felt like a sledgehammer chisling through bone.
As the bullet did its final damage the perpetrator slammed him into the panel of the door, leaving a trail of blood on the frame as he slid to the floor, while the perpetrators leaped over his bludgeoned body scampering for the door.
Thirty six bullets later in a puddle of his own blood, he lifted his eyes to heaven as his emotions began to flood, in that last moment when he was ready to give up the ghost, the heavens opened up and rendered him a heavenly host,
he lifted his battered body and carried him to the front porch, drippings left behind him like a candle floating on a torch, my brother called out for help in a shallow wind and some of the neighbors begin to wonder in.
As the ambulance arrived and rushed him to emergency, my brother blurted out with a loud and vigorous shout, thank you God for rescuing me.
Note: Written in memory of my youngest brother who survived this horrible nightmare to die on a basketball court from congestive heart failure 4yrs. later. I love you brother always!
This poem depicts the struggle for life and death in an unhinged world where life is oblivious to the world at large, and the recipients of violence struggle to stay alive.
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