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Published:March 18th, 2014 15:55 EST
Slavery's Stain

Slavery's Stain

By Ed Roberts

Slavery`s Stain



So many wish to speak of slavery

As a crime of the past

A stain of old

That never washes away


They tell of their ancestors

Who were taken from their homeland

And sold as slaves

To serve masters in the new world


Believe me

I understand this

For my ancestors

Suffered the same as well


Their story

For so many though

Lies forgotten


From their homes

They were taken

Brokered and bartered

By the Barbary corsairs

Into the ports of Tripoli and Tunis

They were taken

And sold at auction

To their African masters

For many families

They were simply listed as

Lost at sea


In a period that lasted

Over several hundred years

Over one million were taken

Many chained to oars of galley ships

Or sent to work in the mines

Their lives from that point on

Was measured mostly in months

Instead of years


The lucky were chosen to be house servants

Or ransomed back to their families

But these were few and far between



I know of slavery

For my bloodline is German, Cherokee, and Irish

And at one point or another

All have suffered this fate


Slavery though

Is not simply a ghost of the past

Something once suffered

But confined to books of history


For far too many

It is a gruesome and harsh reality

Even today



I spoke to a friend of mine in India

He had just returned home from a journey

A mission to rescue his niece

Into slavery she was sold by one of her uncles

She is only twelve


If you wish to know

What some value the life

Of a twelve-year-old girl

From India at

I can tell you


She was sold for five hundred dollars US



So many wish to speak of slavery

As a crime of the past

A stain of old

That never washes away


I can tell you today

For this to ever finally become

Simply a stain from our past

We must all find a way to come together

And as one people

Work to clean it

Even from our own homelands

As well


Ed Roberts 3/15/14