In a game
Where you want to see
A giraffe climb or an elephant push
You have the giants of the game
With even bigger hearts
Making the climb to where
Everything is found in
A basket, that one dunk
Or one free throw or one hook shot
Becomes a hamper

And the word hamper
Has different meanings……
For everyone else, it is a basket,
With food for a picnic
But for the black man on the street,
It means the laundry clothes

It is the basket of dreams he carries
To a laundry for a wash
To hurdle past the hold of color
For renewal

And it only takes a basket to make inroads
To a colorblind world
Of how a jersey with a number
Makes melanin less visible
For a black man to drive down
Glory road, dribbling a large amber ball.

And the man from Akron
Was once a street-kid who emptied
His basket at a nearby laundry. When the stripes
Became stars. Ghettos grew luster.

And the kid grew royal blood
Laying up flyovers to his dream.


Author: meandererworld (Dilantha Gunawardana)

Dr Dilantha Gunawardana is a molecular biologist who graduated from the University of Melbourne. He moonlights as a poet. His poems have been accepted/published in Forage, American Journal of Poetry, Kitaab, Eastlit and Ravens Perch. He mixes science with poetry for a living, when what matters is the expression of both DNA and words into something serendipitous. Although an Australian citizen, Dilantha is domiciled in Sri Lanka, his country of birth.

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