Tuesday, July 22, 2014

For Malcolm Shabazz...





yellow roses in my mother's room  mean
i'm sorry     sadness comes in     generations
an inheritance       split    flayed    displayed
better than all others
the crown                                       weight
the undue burden of the truly exceptional
most special of your kind
persisting unafraid    saffron bloom
to remind us of fragility   or beauty  or                         revolution
or to ponder darkly               brightly
the fate of young kings
the crimes for which             there are no apologies.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Among Others Unnamed & Unmarked

 
for Eric Garner, Renisha McBride, Aiyana Jones, Henry Glover, Justin Sipp, James Brisette, Ronald Madison, Kiymani Gray, Oscar Grant, Wharlest Jackson, Keith Atkinson, Rachel Corrie, Wendell Allen, Chavis Carter, Rekia Boyd, Jordan Davis, Trayvon Martin, George Junnius Stinney Jr., Emmit Till, Ismail,Zakaria, Ahed, and Mohamed Bakr...
                      -Among Others  Unnamed  Unmarked





 
In a dark so deep
we cannot see it---
we are running
from memory.



                                                       a white
                                               girl’s flesh turning  
                                                under
                                            a weight           a bulldozer

 
a bare-chest    
pajama'd bottom
one bullet in Gentilly
 
 
                                                                    a bridge  after a storm
a mother's arm
shot off
near her child's body
 
                                                                                on a beach under sky fire
she
too shocked to scream.

 

 
 
How much     
is thirty-one years
worth
a stolen skull?
 
                                                    what of when you do scream?
                                                            I CAN'T BREATHE!
on an NYC street. 

 
Random:
how many of us are born double jointed?

 

With hands tied
one bullet in the brain
                                                                     who will call
                                                                   out our names?


 
 
Recollection is a fugue
we do(n’t)
remember
at will.

                                                                                     Cuz
                                                                    blood...
:

supremacy flattens
who you back
to fight back

 
Back.
Then.

                                                                     Now.

 
Who is left
to pick up
                                      the debris of bones?

 

Whose crush
makes you
juice?

 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

BLACK PEOPLE. RED EARTH. YELLOW SUN.



Is the total black, being spoken
From the earth's inside.
There are many kinds of open.
How a diamond comes into a knot of flame   
How a sound comes into a word, coloured   
By who pays what for speaking.
 
-Coal-
Audre Lorde

Thursday, May 15, 2014

On to Africa Part 2: Can Anybody Hear Me?

Sunrise:

***

city roosters crow:

***

I sit in the strange chill of this morning--up with the thoughts I went to sleep with. Roots. Deep ones--my own and the roots of Contempt for them. The nameless ones of us in America. The assault seems to come daily and from many obvious and sly angles. The world is busy. Personal, political, and creative activity in the lives of many of the Black women I know, demonstrate to me that lots of us are trying to dually name and rebuke this elusive Thing.

I kill time on purpose and by accident; sometimes on the Internet. Twitter is a medium that for all its pluses is also a place to test the barometer on social/political attitudes toward Black women. Oby Ezekwesli, a  resident of Abuja, Nigeria, recently started the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls to draw attention to the kidnapping of Nigerian schoolgirls by rebel group Boko Haram. Her hashtag's original intent, as I understood it, was to confront both the silence in the international media and pressure the Nigerian government to act in its citizens' interests.

Fast forward and its sunrise in New Orleans. I am thinking of missing women and girls. There is one in particular, I am looking for right now in New Orleans. Gone into the night of anonymity. Sunrise and city roosters crow with no word, no message from her. Michelle Obama had a message. It said: Bring Back Our Girls. I'd like for that to happen. I'd like to sit respectfully in the dissonance of seeing my face tell my face to Bring Us Back and wonder if I'm being militarized in that process.  I wonder what it would be like To be free to cast my lot, with who I may, for my own safety.  I'd like to be able to say : don't put words in a Black woman's mouth; lest you be ate alive once we open it.  I'm thinking of the 500K, I heard a white lady made to co-opt a hashtag and shared suffering.... and wondering..... how some people can use this to play respectability politics....and how some of the anti imperialists online have found the time to chastise those with skin like mine?

This morning, I'm convinced that ignorance beside familiarity, is also an ingredient in the recipe for Contempt. Driven by a lack of reason, the abbreviated equation from some goes:

US, Israeli, Saudi, & Chinese imperial interest in Africa
+
Corruption in Nigerian Government
+
Boko Haram




= Black Americans (Women) have the wrong politics
                                         


I shudder in the peculiar cold of this sunrise. This sunrise that does not know or care for Nigeria or its women any more than it knows or cares, where in Africa, I or my line was stolen from. Tell me, who they are. Then tell me to who my loyalty should lie. Chew a root--set a root--and watch for the signs. Which direction this is all headed in...

Whose Child Am I?



~Gypsy~
 
 
 

Monday, April 14, 2014

Beyonce in Cuba



Beyonce in Cuba
                        ~to have a little fun~
 
You
knew baby
in the daylight
The say light
Up on
a balcony
 Or
A dais
Fresh
Faced
 in the place—
Maybe
She
Came
 
From
 
Hair
braided
Into
Some thing
Like a homeland
What?
Where were you born?
Honeychild.
Some white man’s
Dungeon
Ghana
 or
Amerikkka
La Habana
Or
Ayiti?
 
Out
 
Onto
Nouveau
Orleans
Ran
 into
countryside
Where
You maroon
or
yellow
Niggers
Cut
down
cane
died.
 
 
 
Head
On
Poles
Then
Houston
any of us
could
Be a star
had we
gone
just gone
Texas
Or
Just as far west
As we…
alas
 
Now
You
To make
Josephine’s
Bananas
dance
Again
Again
 
 

Sing it
B
Scratch it
Your voice
itch
a Black girl
Song
Look away
Or
Make it
Shake it
Its yo pearl
Fuck em
Suck
an oyster down
Raw
Sweet
Sweet
Make it nasty
This
time
Show
the
World.



Monday, April 7, 2014

A Hard Day's Song





+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

  
Springtime in the Old South

                                                            ----a poem for the forgotten
 

Come see, Come see,
for just a small fee,
            us be, still as Southern trees.
            Sedentary in the noxious breeze,
strange, we are, these descendants
of those who did not flee.


 
           There is no magnolia perfume or
            gallant gents if what you're digging
            is that old pastoral scene.
See, we, remain, because spilled
            blood is kind of like a root, hardier
            than the flower or the leaves.


 
Here its boogeymen and cane
            not cotton that’s broken down
           quarterly. We spit rocks from
           under tongues, from behind teeth
           just waiting on time to rot. So
          here we be, 
        take your best shot.
     then leave.


No one will blame you for hunting,
 me—the spoils, the crop,
fruit ripe for plucking.

 
 
The rain has begun to gather. Leave
me, pretty with rage. Take, my first born
son as souvenir before you go. Home
to where the air is sweet and fresh.


tell those yet too come about magnolia trees
And how no one would believe the scent
is the smell of young, tender, burning flesh.

 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++