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Thank you Duquesne University

“It was thrilling and it possessed a very deep understanding of social issues that persist today. It was eye opening, interactive and artistically graceful!”

– Emmanuel Joey Apea, Duquesne University

“I appreciated the way you engaged and connected with the audience before and in between each poem. Your performances were inspirational and motivational and help emphasize the powerful messages in your poems.”

– Charley Peppers, Duquesne University

“The show was amazing. The poems were honest and empowering. They make you think and reinforces the pride of us as a people and reminds us of the core purpose of why we are here”

– Mark Wallace, Duquesne University

“We are truly fortunate that Frankie was able to serve as the keynote presenter at our annual Black Love Day. Frankie’s energy, outlook and overall positive vibe was remarked by everyone in attendance. His words made us reflect deeply and the impact of his talents were felt for many days after his appearance on our campus. We highly recommend Frankie as he is very professional, committed to his craft and nothing short of a joy to work with”.”

– Jeff Mallory, Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Duquesne University

Thank you Keene State College

“Not only are you an incredible poet but also a great performer. Your poems brought so many kinds of emotions that night. They were extremely touching. You did phenomenally wonderful” ~ Basanta Rai, Keene State College, NH

“Thank you again, it was an awesome night!!!! You’re an awesome guy with an awesome talent” ~Antonio Rivera, Keene State College, NH

“Your performance was really raw and emotionally charged. It felt like everyone in the room was really connected to you and to each other because we could all relate to the topics you were speaking about” ~Katelyn Franco, Keene State College, NH

Thank you Roanoke College

“Much, Much, Much thanks to this man for helping to bring down the house at Roanoke College, if you haven’t go check his poems because they will move you in more ways then one” ~Amanda Billips, Roanoke College


“Thank you so much for coming and sharing your greatness with us, it will be an experience that lives with us, hopefully we can get you back to do an even bigger event” ~Dantae G Elliot, Roanoke College


“Thank you for coming and sharing your gift with us. I had an amazing time! Truly an inspiring and uplifting night.” ~Karla, Roanoke College

New Poem “Black with No Interruptions”

Black with no Interruption

I grew up addicted to the suspense
Of horror films
my spine stationary
Like telephone poles
Stuck with flickering light bulbs
The musical score would dive in
Base rumbling
Stomach churning
That sensation of either
Peeing or crying
Goosebumps the size of pumpkin seeds
Every lit lantern was a foreshadowing
That the next over confident teen
Was about to be target practice
For a dry machete

I still find myself glued to screens
Ears antennas for any camp fire story
That makes it hard to sleep at night
Winter has bullied all seasons
Into extinction
Cause there is a CHILL that never ends lately
That has the sun barricading itself behind clouds
There are sons being buried who don’t match
The color of clouds
Horror used to just invade nightmares
Now there is a dread lingering to wake up

Fear has monumentally shifted its attack
From the jolts, jumps of suspenseful effects
drowning under blankets
counting to 10 in reverse
slightly peeking through pillows
to secure the vicinity is safe

there are now chokeholds more lethal
then any demonic possession
possession of a cigarette intended for profit
will be corroborated as illegal activity
so the severity of clogging Eric Garners arteries
with WWE submissions
is enough to have every one involved
be acquitted

now history is infamous for omitting all factors
revisionist portrayal is not a comparison that
is fair to all situations
but there is a repetitiveness
that occurs when it relates to black boys
unprecedented death sentences
Guns rewriting GODS timetable

1955 Emmett Tills body
was discovered in shambles
barely recognizable
as if his cheekbones were batting tees for little league
Evidence so obvious
That Lucifer could not speak tongues
Convince juries of absolution
No refusal of guilt could be fathomed
Until lawyers went pro bono
Rallied around color over crime
So all that were left were two free men
Who never knew anything but free
One dead 14year old black boy
Who was barely allowed to buy a drink
After a day of picking cotton

Let me stop and preface
That generalizing a culture
For the actions of individuals
Is not only hypocritical
But as insensitive as referring
to the lost as another black man down
when they carry ancestral legacies in blood

so after decades of being called
black boys
all just black boys
make sure you acknowledge
them by name

To many these are just names
For families this is documentation
Of relevance
of historic recognition
how many bodies
withered away on cotton fields
became numbers like cattle
on plantations
identification came in all forms
of nigga variations

So as the bodies are piling
On concrete floors
Passenger seats
Pinned down
Racial divides
To fear a dreadlock
More than a Mohawk
To be quicker to call a bullet
To action
Depending on the uniform you’re wearing
The ones you never get to pick
Or take off

Funny as a kid if you cried
You were labeled soft
I must be turning into mush
cause the brutality
leads to retaliation
retaliation leads
counter attack
attack leads to reaction
the cycle is infinite
cause the last one holding the gun
will find a form of justice in shooting it

Let me stop and preface
That generalizing all officers
For the actions of individuals
Is inaccurate
So vendettas towards enforcement
Doesn’t increase improvement
Just death tolls

So we have
Michael Krol
Michael Smith
Whose children will be waiting at home
For ghosts that will never return

Being carried in caskets
White men gunned down
Much like black men
executed by force
Hold the explanations
We have too many reasons
Not enough Apologies
Everyone wants to be RIGHT
When all that matters
Is how to end all the WRONG
Isn’t it Ironic how similar
The weight of bodies in all color feels
when lowered to the ground

Black lives have always mattered
maybe there lies the problem
That while others invade
That statement
With ALL lives matter

Then they must ask themselves
Why didn’t Black Lives
Have a more prominent equal role
In the ALL LIVES MATTER movement
Or why was the ALL LIVES MATTER
An idle movement
Rose to action

There would be no necessary
Need to SHOUT
If everyone truly understood
That to us
They have always mattered
And it needs
Without interruption

Since I was a kid
I have been addicted to scary movies
But lately this kind of terror
Is making it harder to sleep

©Frankie A Soto

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