Monday, June 30, 2014

Friday, June 27, 2014

Seven Meditations on Black Dance


The sad swan mounted on a lion blind to her glory suddenly released to it / thinking 

You have an obligation    to treat the body like part of your personality    to let it grieve and celebrate with you     Your beauty is a duty like every (other) motherhood   to be the belle heaving her hips to the rhythm of every trauma narrative parodied by silence    dialed toward new birth   shy hybrid turned pure on the high 

That's black dance that's 
Diasporic Consciousness        A way of overcoming  


How could the ganja flow from his hair like ideas in flight   and  every idea you have is an idea of yourself    and the movement skries and scurries by  bye blackbird   until   that mexican man with the grocery cart full of empty bottles that toll like holy bells, his swollen bliss, he just looked up from his bounty to meow at me  all literal    coward    These leaps   the wide diagonal between one foot and the other in an air steep with my impeccable will power    the muse is too bouncy to be the mute also  and territory has found a way to rove like perfect barricades to intimacy      I begin to re-enact forgetting   remove my clothing  in the wings / put on a space suit and patrol the stage for true ships        

my favorite disarray is truth  is,     look how it bides its temple looking for visitors and finds another feral      kinda    I'm black as time   thing    refusing  kind


There are slaves in those ships   I found      not those ships    too      I gathered a team of so brave lack men        men are the ones  that matter most to me ever since the first one disappeared  senseless    promises    and tame ultimatums   that one day  everyone was implicated       I   learned prison is outsourced slavery   or resourced, they have men  in there milking goats to sell at the fanciest stores   and I keep those stores in business with my fancy tastes and I keep the prisons in business with all my brave  and obedient father figures bent over the utters of some spurned livestock   or blockade gotta be free drum haven    the shocking work come song and dance   all of us kneeled in prayer as if looking there  /  one by one we tremble and trample one another and turn into water / lust   I waited at the door for him to reappear       Here he is now panicking at all his power  rubbing the eyes of the story looking for stylized recognition      my urgent tenderness slows down to brace a clan 


Should I spend all night listening to Horace Silver play doors with the cosmos. Shivering on the pillow of this book about plant alchemy / script for the domestic nook in me / I call that man a preacher / he crawls back into the afterlife / satisfied / might return rich and white / might return beautiful and black again with eleven layers of his / mined / stacked in a drumline like a library of magic mimic men /  you should look him up  / even his mugshot is drastically sensitive   even   when he was locked up  he acted  all   who watches the watchers, paced the yard for dealers     found me a mirror   ya'll  found me a tall clear minded saint and left him in the new world to ball out like a caucus girl    cause I'm generous like that 


Another nobel sugar      It's innocence gives us dignity     Another mesmerizing nigga interrupting the love scene to say  when doves cry   it's rage that causes that     it's rage that has us     this gorgeous   adagio    I don't  know how many more events   can be lodged in the heart like paternal    charters  murmuring    local      far           the truth is larger than Hollywood and    braver than forever   ours     is    just lazy    like nature    perfect and no need to announce it  except as a pace    or  good ass town   to be in   and out of   


This is Venus    in the   hood.   Not the tennis star   ,  the planet /  the     black queen of the Andes who invented the family of superlatives   love calls love.   Love calls    love calls   all day     love keeps calling.    The stage is breaking under me and this is the meaning of flight   or just another magic    act   like you   know         
               how to plan a divorce when you barely even met the man      just yesterday   as he pulled his tantrum gun    to shine the tree of life   like a massa's glass shoe / that gesture is a mirror factory    too     many     mirrors    make a black   dream    blind       fold     not never    no surrender but a    new and improved rendition of surrey with a fringe   on top 


We located the word trajectory and bottled it, brought Hennessy on stage and  our favorite  lock step jump rope move real paid to say we drink this shit  but the   props got invisible as power   and     good  jobs.     Good job, man.     I mean     I wanted to move my body  of  flutes     inside of  a   peaceful diamond and do drunkeness parttime   lover  shit    I still want it, too.    I heard in east LA the old buildings are sinking   into   Harlem and the pressure on the earth is causing       the people living in them   to    mention the afterlife like an action / more than once a day  / sad exercise like pedaling   and it all becomes  a euphemism    for the do   nothing way    even jazz can't save  a Capitalist from the      sentient materialism we call   somebodiness   and  life         These people think pain is  noble       their bodies  learn to believe the lies their minds   repeat  over and over     for generations /   and then one   day Josephine Baker turns into     statue      and they ship her off to Georgia and the rugged shame of idols    turns our consciousness     idle   while    somewhere in Chicago  an circle of devoted    feet slope airward   in the malted   paragon       of honest rewards    I   unplug all the machines  starting with the    ugly      clean ones that keep us inside shrugging   single file        we  be still    in the   love   call   we be still   in the love   call   

we be still   still all out there   calling /  still      

Do I move you   Are you willing

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Primal rhymes

Mostly on tv the lion ate the hyenas but sometimes the hyenas formed a posse and tore the lion up. 

and an anemic plan to save the music by stealing it got us this fit of camels tucked into a scam horizon

My phone turns Nefertiti into Jefferson automatically and my new mind is never baffled by the absence of black saviors today, busy with broken names

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Just to hear the wild ox moan

Everything but the interlude is useless the space between your thoughts disproves disillusionment except when he promises I'm just another crazy nigga and all those years flash by like a basket of false teeth left in the sun to flower I never wanted to be your housewife wildlife by Tony Williams bright survival of the desperately functional heraldic no wonder I'm suddenly throwing darts at the corkboard all I plan is my escape and all that is is a pace fast as the radiant light I is always I waited and waited because the safety of disappointment felt patient to cling to medical how we all balled out over the tantra looking for someone to cuddle or fuck must have fallen in love with a slave who got sold off to a different plantation one day in the tempting futuristic past we kinda miss masters of the trauma tabloid that line was so cold that primal cold there's a total arrogance to succumbing to your original hunger and that's the sunny blindness I'm about

Monday, June 16, 2014

Acropolis-Soul (one tests gold in fire)

Dear Dad,
They say—that looming invisible "they" who comprise our collective conscience, our moral breaking-in: do what you have to do but often I think some nobler essence stems from doing what you don't have to do, that the rogue soul shows itself and vanquishes hubris in the unfolding of such a graceless grace as superfluous will power like that. I'll try and save a few words for the war on saviors. The small things, the ones peeking through the melody of "Hello Dolly" when Louis Armstrong covers it, converts pop gunk to jazz incumbent like recombinant dna is his own invention. All the men in my line are named Jimmy but the white ones have always called themselves Jim and James. And then closer to his transition into the afterlife or postearth or eternal return cycle of crossfires, grandpa, mom's dad, called himself Jimmy in a stark breach of decorum, called your name when one of his live-in nurses asked him to identify himself. Before that I wondered if blackness was a sign of the disorganized soul or the reintegrated one. I fought with everyone over the difference, right there at his funeral and full of desperate stoicism in that manicured militarized zone, I fought him back home. A few weeks later it's father's day and orphan's everywhere are vague with pride. I didn't know where to start the celebration. I woke to a photo of the man I love djing at some club, sweat and scheme on his brow, sent by my oldest friend. I'd missed everything trying to cleanse my soul on another seasonal juice fast, the caption read in silence. I hadn't been ready. On the axis of preparation I had chosen the past and the future again and again and I could only love myself and I only do this effusive dance to express that love of pain (discpline unmasked) that is love of self that is confused with self-mastery, that is that. Then I thought, all these years since you died, all these unyearlike years I've called grandpa on father's day and done something shamefully vicarious but true no less, pretended I had a living father until I do. Now he's gone too and too close to reach like you were before, and I thought of my uncle, another Jimmy who still calls himself Jim and James and life has a tenuous grip on him too, his will jitters with some kind of disgust for his own excellence until it almost breaks. Anyhow, so I wrote him a quiet almost furtive email just around midnight when I could finally bring myself to stop reading Foucault's The Use of Pleasure for long enough to turn on Alice Coltrane's Walk with Me and cry into my gazes again like a bold colt running across a plains of melting ice. The fast is forcing me to feel the things I repress in the robotics of more popular rituals, like had I gone to that club last night instead of staying home to stretch and write, like had I married a music man before becoming his mistress. So I sent Uncle Jim a happy father's day note complete with the quote I'd read earlier this week, Ruby Dee discussing her role in Do the Right Thing: "See I don't expect to win a prize for stoic control and dignity during mourning time. Death deserves tantrums, beating back, shocked indignation, kicks in the groin, stones, classified unacceptable, not to be celebrated, not to be wooed, not to be conspired with, only then can music, dance, movies, plays, rap, be about life. Only then can life be cherished and adored." Sometimes I practically wince under the tentative gauntlet of my own sentimentality. It felt a little empty and a little complete to strike send and move on to the slumped glory of that minor accomplishment, saying happy father's to someone, anyone, until I really meant it. I don't believe like O'Hara did once, maybe flippantly but on the record, that sentiment gets in the way of form, I believe it just is form, your world takes the shape of your feelings, as in love is my form, the most ambivalent kind, on a perfect day sponsored by the Velvet Underground and that crazy nigga I'll always love. I bought a mound of rose quartz to soak in while I read more about the ethics of the flesh in detached awe. I can't always find my favorite thought but when I do it stays in my head like one of your songs at dawn, and paces me for a place in my soul and this letter is the process of that happening, that recurring miraculous black rhythm happening. I think I love men more than they tend to love themselves. Mom texted "how are you doing" hours ago, I don't know how to respond so I don't. Fabulous and despondent. Busy doing everything I don't have to do.

Thursday, June 12, 2014


Do you sometimes fantasize just a little
plant quicksilver in the communal memory
Shouting Respect my influence!      and then my nigga clutches a nickel bag so much    rubber motherhood dragged around like love I could just  (I fell in love with you)        I'm ready to be objectified      the way I objectify everybody   especially          here comes everybody       from around the way    claiming they always wanted to be a verb now that verbs are healers   in the ageless certainty of some solar wink no more trouble        quitting the circus to join the memory    do you    sometimes       just a little      coaxed across the joke  like if you can't suffer  you can't laugh        like the backlash    for    satisfaction   is satisfaction   exactly as flat as    the   neverending  accuracy of injustice         how it saved   us from the disgusting pressures of freedom     disguised as   luxury     husband     stable      substance abuse      I sometimes pretend I'm for sale again   come to find out      and the light in the   sound     I  sometimes get around to being that righteous  

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

And I looked around and everybody was cheering

So it must have been ok
Many blocks away we could see daddy whistling in the night
He had that rare ability to whistle in several tones at once
And he would tell a bunch of lies all the time
He claimed he was Al Capone
promised happiness was the loneliest urge
Threw roses at the herd like an undercover blood bath
how that love was

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

He sees through stone

He sees through stone 
He has the secret eyes 
this old black one who under prison skies sits 
pressed by  the sun   against the western wall 
His pipe between purple gums 

Angels in the battlefield

Truce!, truce! Tyranny, truce! I only trusted you— to animate the two statues.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Opera for a toy ghetto (prayer for my unborn boy)

Nestled in a carefully curated chaos and ablaze in the factory sun   total influence spun into objects crushing all the revellers     soporific volta   and a hundred other turns of luck made us human again  and crumbling like sick buildings that would erect again as monuments exalted for their intentional stagnancy  their incidental music  their wounded narcissism and the beauty it informs in we    I still don't believe in anything  especially marriage and blackness     but please believe in me   but transcendence but the dance as a form of laughter at the dance when

Channels and mules and men are obsolete absolutely     the cruelty of obsolescence is equipped with a motor    it runs    carbon and dumb good at running    my hungry   ignorance   my obsession    my elite remedy for elitism  and    how many elegies tell a race    have we made it yet   to that after the end of the world we  went for begetting endlessness  begetting   good thing I forget your name  in time 

We mostly know things are different because people ask us different questions 

How many enemies make a soul? was one I ran to for rescue and found his arms were my own 

Friday, June 6, 2014

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Monday, June 2, 2014


His last words were show/biz

I plan to stay a believer 

Her last words were show/biz 

I plan to stay a believer 

His last words were show/biz 

And the healer's infinite scandal is pretending to be other than yourself 

And this disintegration becomes disinterest and sho is nice to be a believer 

Her last words were show/biz 

And sho is nice to be the actress fumbling on a tightrope chanting all traps are like that backwards into his contraband of lastness 

and meaning drums. I always mean drums like Duke Ellington under words they are the sole witnesses to our pledged integrity revoked by action. I sat around dreaming up ways to make a rich man proud for raising me, his black actress, his last words were show/biz — it finally has to be about conversation, why we pick this embarrassed planet, to become the grammar of supposedly invisible classes of meaning and I'll show no mercy in becoming 


Where do you think black entertainment will be five years from now? 

All traps are like that. Drummers and wanna be drummers smiling occult kitsch while they get high in kitchens or five o'clock back alley blues out a window a whole generation of nameless children groomed for shame. Ennobled, asking, is the desert a ruined ecosystem, is it really supposed to go down like this, vapid and elaborately beautiful, same mule, same vault, sound bitten from a false plea 

so now we know a little bit about how this creature lives  some spectators will grimace 

Somewhere between chicken and windchimes we've grown afraid of our music     all traps are like this    Patient   self-made  men