This spoken poem, “Knock Knock”, by Daniel Beaty will move you. I hope you watch it before you read any further. It’s not long. In fact it is so engaging, you may want to watch it again.
It moves me each time I see it. Today I shared it with my teenage daughter. We both welled up as we watched the brilliance of Daniel Beaty on the screen, felt the pain of his experience, and shared in answering that pain.
Afterwards I asked myself, “Why does this touch you so? What possible experience do you have that begins to approach what Mr Beaty expresses here? Very quickly, it hit me. Daniel Beaty’s experience is mine. Maybe it is yours too. This is powerful because it is personal. It is all of us. Everyone has pain. And that pain includes times people we have needed so very much have let us down. Times we have wanted something so much from someone, but they have been unwilling or unable to give it to us. Times when we have ached and wondered if it was our fault. We have blamed ourselves. We have asked questions and blamed others. Unanswered heartache so often having nothing to do with us. And we, have no power to repair.
But the beauty in Knock Knock is that Daniel Beaty answers his own door. Eases his own pain. Repairs the heartache. He rises up out of the hurt inflicted by his father to circle around and make it all right. He is strong. He is powerful. He is love.
Thank you, Daniel Beaty for showing the way. For lighting up the darkness in your own world and sharing that light with us all.
*Gratitude to Kelly Gallagher for sharing this Spoken Poem with LAUSD educators at ESC, South last month.