I first met Karl almost eight years ago in Brixton, London. He is quite an imposing person given I stand 6ft, and he still towers over me like a giant from Han Christian Anderson fairy tale. As with many Black kids growing up within our inner cities, Karl had tough choices to make and dangerous lessons to learn. The first day we cast eyes on one another I was in my local government uniform and tie he was wearing a bulletproof vest. He talked rapidly about the life he was leading, the inspirational pastor who was helping him to rebuild his life, his dreams, his aspiration. He was young, but already time was catching up with him. Over the years he stumbled but resisted a return to the life he once led. Today Karl is a husband, poet, activist, influencer, and incredible human being who I am proud to call a friend. This is Karl’s first release of his poetry online. If you want to know more about Karl then click here.