To Michael Brown: They Didn’t Know You Were a Seed

by Krislyn Domingue

They tried to bury us, but they didn’t know that we were seeds. —Mexican Proverb

Michael, they’ve buried you, but they did not know you were a seed. And my brother you have sprouted. You were planted when life was taken from you; and the tears of your mother, your father, the tears of your sisters, your brothers, my tears have nurtured and cultivated them. Yes, my brother, you have sprouted.

When I last wrote of you I thought of my unborn son. Now you have blossomed into a flower I will never let die for with the wind, your seeds have been carried and implanted within my soul. Wherever I float you will float also.

But I do not want you to feel the disorder in my soul, because I want you to rest. I want you to bask in the sun shining on your petals. I want you to drink down the coolness of holy water and to find your peace. For the troubles of this world are no longer yours. Rest and know that your seeds are safe with me, with us.

Michael, they’ve buried you, but they did not know you were a seed.

Every morning I rise and embody the brown that was taken from you. Your seeds have fallen on fertile ground, Michael. I was ready for you. We were ready for you. Our brown bodies were fertile enough to tend to your seeds. We were ready for the work.

I am ready for the work. And I will take care of this brown, I will take care of this body that is your soil so that your flower will never die. They cannot pluck you as long as you are planted here within me. They cannot pluck you as long as you are planted in our souls. They will not take you away from us again.

I can promise you that.

We will be your gardeners, guarding you with our very lives. I cannot promise you your justice, but I can promise you that you will stand strong. Never again will the forces of this world knock you to the ground. I will be your support when you need it. I will be your reinforcement.

Your flower will bloom into the botany of legends. You will continue to sprout on the fertile browns of the little Black children to follow you. Endlessly you will sprout on the fertile browns of my unborn son, of my unborn daughter, of my little Brown children. They will whisper your name and plant you elsewhere. The wind’s whispers will carry your name, and where it is carried, it will fall on fertile ground. It will sprout again.

And like all seeds that sprout into the beauty we deem flowers, you need protection. We will be that. We will be your protection, your safe keepers. You have joined our garden, and your roots are intertwined with those of our foremothers and forefathers. Know that we are intertwined, united, rooted because of and for you, my brother.

Michael, they’ve buried you, but they did not know you were a seed.

Krislyn Domingue is a rising sophomore, Sociology & Anthropology and Comparative Women’s Studies double major at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. She enjoys reading, writing, and sipping Chai Tea. Email:; Twitter: @krislynsd.

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