“It Took a Nation”: Ode to Trayvon Martin

It was a cool, rainy night in Stanford, Florida, February 2012.  Young, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin left a convenience store where he had purchased an Arizona Iced Tea and a bag of Skittles candy.  While speaking with this girlfriend over the telephone/cell, he noticed a man following him.  Concerned, he informed his girlfriend what was happening.  I believe Trayvon new in his spirit his life would end on that night.  The killer said he was only following and watching, but Trayvon new it was more than that.

His concerned girlfriend said, “run, Trayvon, run”, but Trayvon, not wanting to invoke a chase decided to walk fast.  Before he can escape, the perpetrator has him cornered and Trayvon is in for the fight of his life, which he eventually lost.

Trayvon’s grueling screams for help are captured on 911 tapes as neighbors listened, paralyzed with fear, refused to look, unwilling to witness what they knew in their hearts was the scream of death. 

This was like a trip back to the 1960’s. Black men and young boys chased by the Klan, murdered for no reason other than the color of their skin.  Oh, how Trayvon must have been so afraid and horrorfied so terrified and filled with the question of why?, why? why?  During those final moments he had to call on God.  “I know God loves me, my mom said so.  My beautiful brown skin, thick lips, coarse hair, sense of humor.”  A million questions and dialogue with the Father God.

About to transition into young adulthood, young manhood, life, all his dreams and aspirations flash before his eyes.  His future children who will never be.  So many lessons that will never be learned or taught by our beloved Trayvon.  Another promising young Black man lost to the great divide.

Trayvon will miss his mother’s voice and loving touch, her love and embrace.  His father’s deep voice and strong arm — “Lord please fill the voice in their hearts”.  The shot rang out. 

The quietness.  It’s almost too quiet. 

My murderer told a lie.  He said it was self-defense.  That’s why he murdered me and what’s worse, they believed him.  I didn’t even know the man who later identified himself as George Zimmerman.  A small-time, self-appointed vigilante.


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