04/01/2012 09:00 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Martin

I am from Seattle and although we've never met, I feel your pain all the way over here. I'm an advocate for homeless youth and out here, every day is a risk, especially if you're a person of color. There is so much I want to say but the only way I could get out what I feel for you is to write it in the form of a poem. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family for this inexcusable tragedy. Sending you much love from Seattle!

Today I cried
For another young life
Gone too soon
Sent to the other side because he was
Betrayed by someone blinded by
The color of his skin


Those of us who stand
On this side of the color line
Know full well what justice looks like
From the insides of prison cells
Fed by the toxic pipeline that continues
To frack our youth
Straight into the bowels of hell

Or worse

Today I cried
At the sad display
Of circus reporters
Putting tragedy on display
Diffusing and confusing lack of justice more than once
While blatantly disrespecting the memories of
All our sons

This will not do

Today I cried
As I put on my sign
Joining others marching down the street
Solidarity with you is what we do
Because we must
Otherwise there will be no justice
For any of us

Today I cried
As I watched a rainbow of thousands
Touched not by hate but by love
For you, for him
And all that is sacred