Friday, August 31, 2012

Giant Folklore for the Sky

and a huge ivory rivalry ate the night twice this August, moonshine/ finally, and again
god and reason became dialects, me talk pretty any day now, they pledged and played the circle game over and over until there were no more curves in the road just light and shadow, tears and blow-kisses at the moment you mean to lift a fuck you finger, it works like gagging, works when you want to scream, choking on the atmosphere in a dream. Silence is a place in which to scream, and the ivory in me gets too many hands once in a while I'd like to land on the moon with the good liars-- dialectical I mean, we become opposites because it's too painful to face the tribe and deny it. Much to my disappointment, to meet god you gotta meet the devil too, and both are so beautiful every two moon August you almost wanna worship a man you can't stand just to protect the one you love from the commons. The lies could grow on us, fill us up with ivory and paint us black beauty, have us at the front door of our own homes asking for directions home--- I think we'd better dance quietly until the sun rises

Thursday, August 30, 2012


When after all the chaos of unknowns, when you make a tender statement, something real sweet-direct, when you just caress a note,

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Monday, August 27, 2012

Complete Mythology

Motown Philly Back Again

We're all pagans and shamans and clap your hands now we won't stop the beat

We believe in divine healing and we hate to see that evening sun go down 

We know when the sight of our women dressed in white on ritual night, is touching, hypnotizes

The animals blush and split for us as revival, as revealed to themselves

These are triumphant women. 

Even Sister Fame hiding out in the alley turning tricks and singing verses from the undid scripture, is touching

Thank you jesus, thank you jesus, that you jesus, baby, is that you, she mutters up high between rocks and lace---his eagerness--- it was all night long

Sometimes he'd interrupt a recording session to tell us about his early Motown days or expand on his views of Heaven and Hell

One time he was saying how important it was to love one's father.

Do you love yours? I asked him

Why don't you tell him

Why don't you tell your father, he said

I will if you do

You go first

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Timing/ (the applause)

Not now, I'll tell you when.

The militants are balanced with such complacent creatures, the critic wrote, that the race will never get it together

Now you hold your own hand
Now I sing the body electric and panic when it answers, yes, yes
Now you walk through the glass and fill your arms with prophylactics and breakfast cereal
water and a real solid afro pic, a few lottery tickets and party hats, a jar of pickles, a unripe mango, is this a spell, is this right spell, and run your ass home as fast as you can, as fast as you ever can


Saturday, August 25, 2012

The magazine said

that the girl should have gone solo
that she reflected on her childhood when she should have been 
dressing and heading for the stage

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Ballad of Edie Barrow

He looked deep and long in my long black eyes.
And he played his songs in my long black hair.
He took me away to his summertime place
Close was our flesh in the winking hours
closely and sweetly entwined
Let this good way continue out beyond
her power to believe or to surmise
No more
bringers of tedium, bringers of the driveway
Bringers of the lookout, bringers of the idle perch
Let this good way continue out beyond
their power to believe or surmise


Sunday, August 19, 2012

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Accept no substitutes

It can be said that the music is a truth we know because we live it

Great day in the morning

I was browsing the "Jazz Books" section of Amazon one dawn in cyberspace when Karl Marx's biography: Karl Marx, His Life and Environment. popped up on the list, right after How Satchmo Blew up the World.  Then came Traps: The Drum Wonder: The Life of Buddy Rich. Then Lady Sings the Blues, Centennial Edition wherein when the editor asked Holiday herself to remove some of the profanity, she wrote a memo back in thick black action letters. "change bitch to whore," Next on the list was The American Ways Series: Jazz in American Culture. Then: The Atlantic Story, Then Nina Simone's gorgeously written biography: I Put a Spell on You, then Hampton Hawes' masterpiece, slavepeace, dimepiece, Raise up off Me. The sun was soft on a blunt mumbling urban horizon and even when some of them resemble lost bunnies and playboys on an expedition into the way we live-- it was a great day in the morning, another great day in the morning 

But wait...

Friday, August 17, 2012

We was here before god

we invented him--

to describe ourselves in that blunt mirror of actual spiritual embezzlement 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

We in shiny suits


Frantic privacy
Why do you do so many
Jazz poems?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

This must be deep

What-now upside the wall I see/ a shadow of the image-me

Monday, August 13, 2012

Storytelling abilities

My soft antagonist. He is already on parole for waving an unloaded gun at one of our neighbors. 
His eyes pace the jury for jade, or savior, or another blurred mistake bird
Milkshake brings all boys to the yard
byrd/Confirmation dancing between white sheets. I made myself
all three/green dress/ white 
shadow /Katherine Dunham waltz, knot of all/not at all 
to appease him, just because I can 
be the alter

And then, and then, and then
We reach the uncanny-valley
we make ourselves at home and we make ourselves away-- our valor, our very victory, it weighs us down with its         forgiving heart 
It likes the way things sound when they are all torn apart.
The gun becomes a flag and the flag a numb addict
Trembling, charming, anything the critic can lip sync to on the primal, on the fugitivity, on the gate note--- is it a cry -mme/ is it a... 
that I still, that I still find 
his emptiness heroic, opulent, a good neighborhood, a flag with no bullets through it. 

A day with no riddles in it is such eeriness
A riddle with no days in it is just delirious. 
And trouble only keeps us safe to tell it 

And then, and then, and then
We reach out to it again

One for My Immediate Niggas

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Friday, August 10, 2012

Watch a little how she dances

Transforms your nightmare into a quest, doesn't acquiesce--

We came here with new faces

Trying to embody an idea so clearly that it disappears, disperses, begins being how it is in the tribe

Ever notice some high yellow honeys have such high energy

Ever wonder why

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The mimic men make statements

You might see a robot going through a series of events

Stressing out the fruits as they ripen
which helps the sugars become more concentrated, not the nutrients but the sugars, gently yield together

the drenched feathers of a flock of, no a herd of... have you heard of

the lacto-fermented tears of the black man

They got all the relevant knowledge from just them

And, yes, the machine was understanding

The machine understood me as it manufactured

Dystopian themes and the cyborg hustle and good machine poetry and the low-key brutality of video hopefuls and wannabes, in honor of--

We used to be a merciful people/ we used to be a humane people

Reincarnation is real.

It's nice to slow down in the middle of a baton crumbling around the dream like lightening, and let it strike like police at the peaceful gathering because then at least someone screams and

then for the space of that evening you have completely broken out of the ranks of your family, which veers off into the void, while you yourself, firm as canbe, black with your sharpness of outline, slapping the back off your thighs, rise to your true stature. All this is intensified still further if at so late an hour of evening you look up a lover to see how he is doing

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

For the street slopes uphill, and the moon is full

and the echo is no longer a bully
and it's not an ad campaign either
and it nods majestically
yes, no, maybe, not so fast, faster than that 
he comes running towards us and we let him run on

Becoming a Good American

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Senghor will not be shred

gargantuan gardens in the careful sun, 
fairy story gold, thrones, feasts and three princesses 
summer sailboats 
like cartoon ghosts or klansmen, pointing up
white questions in the blue air...
Believes in beauty... 

shall we sit on ourselves; shall we wait behind roses and veils for monsters to maul us, 
for bulls to come butt us forever and ever, 
shall we scratch in our blood, 
point air-powered hands at our wounds, 
reflect on the aim of our bulls. 

How proud
How prowed

Friday, August 3, 2012

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Sophisticated Daydream

I love questions too, and we have some of the same obsessions. A zen tempo in decadent places. The unanswered ones that pace the cursor looking for hunters/who do you love in a sunny union of immense parallels, when miracles and disasters are one thing together, mellow explosions of habit to destabilize the black myth, and all we can say is, oh well. We know our mothers would get along too well, like enemies. It would be enough to make us feel like orphans, eventually

Wednesday, August 1, 2012