By Bryce Yoder, Student Writer in Residence

The steady,
breathless,
thump thump.
thump thump.
thump thump.
I hear it every morning,
every night –
with every retweet and every like
a nation holds it breath.
And you can feel the tension in the pit of its chest.
I woke up three days in a row,
checking Twitter expecting to hear the monotone
wail
of the frail heart flatlining –
followed shortly thereafter by my own.
Every day I left my house,
didn’t know if when I came home
there would be no blood in the aorta.
Being entirely honest,
I felt sorta scared.
Scratch that, petrified
that a nation’s voice would once again be cast aside
by an archaic system crafted by the unworked hands of those who owned slaves,
a system that necessitated white maleness and land-owning to have any sort of say,
and so I doom scroll in silence,
the only ambiance the steady
thump thump
of a heart I swore was dying –
the dull heartbeat of a nation softly crying,
waiting to see if their voices even matter.