Art in Action iconArt in Action
Rinn Cronin-Kleinman


Dear Systems of Care,

Care is one word for taking baby
birds and binding their wings
throwing us in cages
beaks held shut
Systems of care
decide when the bird sings

To be seen not heard
You decide what’s best for this bird
based on discrimination, bias,
inequity, fear
You steal our songs
and pretend to know our story
Speak to your higher power of what
good you’ve done
We are trophies a ticket to your heaven

The tide raised this morning when
we aged out of your care
Wings still bound you threw us to the sky
and you thought this bird would fall
Little do you know
birds of a feather flock together
On the wings of another we flew
taking to the sky
We will learn to fly

Relearn the choice is ours to stand
and fight
With the songs of advocacy
we learn to sing
To stand against your injustice
though your system is unrepairable
we learn
what transformation will take
Not another baby bird shall you break

The sun raised this morning
we woke in light
The warmth of another
Our experiences are not our blight
We teach those who will come after us
the songs of this land
With all our voices your bigotry won’t stand

Dear Systems of Care,
by now you know your mistakes
Limiting our voices, freedoms and cultures is
no longer alright
For these mockingbirds will continue to fly
every day and every night

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