ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

   

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where once tall oaks grew spreading magnificent branches that embraced whole families

of revelers joyfully enjoying a home-cooked holiday brunch, iron horseshoes clanging as poppa

threw a dead ringer and junior dug a serving spoon into aunt juanita’s mustard-colored

potato salad while ambrose sat with his latest girl friend snuggling in his lap, lying . . .

 

 

Books by Kalamu ya Salaam

 

The Magic of JuJu: An Appreciation of the Black Arts Movement  /   360: A Revolution of Black Poets

Everywhere Is Someplace Else: A Literary Anthology  /  From A Bend in the River: 100 New Orleans Poets

Our Music Is No Accident   /  What Is Life: Reclaiming the Black Blues Self

My Story My Song (CD)

 

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Beneath the bridge

        (A 2006 eulogy for North Claiborne Avenue

        from Canal Street down to Elysian Fields)

                                         By Kalamu ya Salaam

 

beneath the bridge on claiborne avenue, there,

where the mardi gras indians used to go and offer up their colorful vows to never bow down as they trodded around mean streets, freely treating our eyeballs to the most prettiest, feathered, multi-hued suits that any man could ever hope to sew and wear in any given lifetime, they hollered the chants of saints, their eyes burning with the fire of the guardians of the flame sounding out sacred syllables in a language without name, words whose meanings we could not specify but whose dynamic intentions none of us could deny;

where once tall oaks grew spreading magnificent branches that embraced whole families of revelers joyfully enjoying a home-cooked holiday brunch, iron horseshoes clanging as poppa threw a dead ringer and junior dug a serving spoon into aunt juanita’s mustard-colored potato salad while ambrose sat with his latest girl friend snuggling in his lap, lying through his gold-capped teeth about how much money he won betting on the ponies last week and how he was paying for this whole spread out of just a small portion of the purse he achieved when he selected a horse whose number was the same as this girlfriend’s birth date or was it the thirty-something double digit that was both her bust and her butt tape measurement?;

where the concrete construction of a federal expressway created a sound-box that high school bands rolled through inter-threading the ebony thighs of teenage girls with aural ribbons of raucous marching music played with a buck-jump beat the song’s composer never intended or imagined, shouted out with an upful, youthful swagger whose chocolate sweetness was so deep that all you could do was smile, and smile as the parade provided a sonic prescription for whatever ailed you;

where along either side of the street used to thrive haberdasheries (which offered everything worth wearing, from congressional sky pieces to tailored peg-legged pants dyed a diversity of tints & shades selected from a rainbow of pigments that made technicolor seem dull, not to mention stacy adams shoes whose shine was so gleaming you did not need a mirror);

where doctor’s offices and pharmacies, grocery stores and mortuaries, flower shoppes and butcher stalls testified to the industriness of an urban community still shaking country dust off its boots, run right up next to passé-blanc dynasties that had been resident in these homes since the slavery time placages that produced their pale-skinned lineages;

where houston’s school of music was on one side and the negro musicians’ union was on the other, and barbershops and hair salons hosted weekly informal town hall meetings at which every manner of contemporary problem was advised and analyzed in betwixt the salacious shoo-shoo of who did what to whom and why;

where a veritable smorgasbord of eateries such as levatas seafood which specialized in chilled half-shelf oysters deftly shucked as you stood at the rail exchanging mirthful curses with a man whose one good eye could unerringly spy the seam in a tightly sealed oyster’s shell, and the lemon juice squeezed and rubbed onto working hands to eradicate the smell of sucking on and swallowing warm crawfish washed down with quarts of cold beer, or the two huge italians that had a grill called pennies where the sizzling hot sausage was so good, so hot the cap never had to come off the tabasco bottle, and the french bread was fresh and the lettuce crisp and the tomatoes so sweet you lifted a slice and slid it into your mouth grinning in delight at the wonderfully tart taste bursting forth, alerting your salivary glands to the poboy treat shortly to follow;

where music factories called nightclubs and music emporiums better known as joints like the fabled club 77 at which the sunday night sets lasted til monday morning wherefrom some patrons would head straight to work without seeing their homes which they had left on saturday not to return until late after-work on monday where upon one fell out totally oblivious to anything until tuesday morning, hang-outs and haunts in which a young man feeling himself saw a fine woman from the rear, figuring that was all he needed to know, rushed over to her, tapped her on the shoulder and was semi-shocked to see, when she turned around, that this fox was his twelfth grade teacher, and though clearly a bit embarrassed, neither of them was really surprised that the other was there;

where protest marches and marcus garvey celebrations, spring festival carriage and limousine parades with little freckled-faced future creole queens shyly waved a gloved hand at ruffians with holes in their pants as their manhood throbbed at the thought of knocking the little man out of those young girl’s boats;

where tambourines fanned us, sudan regaled us, and the avenue steppers showed how our feet would not fail us as long as we stuck one to the other high stepping and kicking them up, all up and down the way with everyone on the one and yet at the very same time each and all of us, the young, old, short and tall of us, exactly and precisely doin’ what we wanna and only what we wanna;

where fleets of second-liners have carried so many of us off to the great beyond in ceremonies during which coffins were sat on bars and shots of scotch were poured atop the casket, a libational commemoration of another man who done gone to glory or how the unforgettably gorgeous sight of a mother dancing atop the box that held the remains of her son was a socially sanctioned and totally acceptable way to both memorialize a life as well as say her last goodbyes accompanied by the bravado of some young dimple-cheeked trumpeter dueling with an elegant grey-bearded cornetist, the both of them trying to out blow the other, one could have been named Joshua and the other might have been called Gabriel, as their brass notes rang out the strains of i’ll fly away, oh lordy, i’ll fly …;

there, where a once proud avenue is now nothing but a site of sadness, a cemetery for the rusted corpses of flooded cars covered only in the flimsiest scrim of katrina dust caked on like filthy rings in the toilet bowl of a superdome bathroom;

there, beneath the bridge, on north claiborne avenue.

Source: WordUp

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Capitalism and the Ideal State: Marcus Garvey  / Negroes and the Crisis of Capitalism (Du Bois)  / Economic Emancipation of Africa

Liberty and Empire  /  Money is Speech   /  On Capitalism: Noam Chomsky

Guarding the Flame of Life / Strange Fruit Lynching Report

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Bob Marley— Exodus

Bob Marley was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician. He was the lead singer, songwriter and guitarist for the ska, rocksteady and reggae bands The Wailers (19641974) and Bob Marley & the Wailers (19741981). Marley remains the most widely known and revered performer of reggae music, and is credited for helping spread both Jamaican music and the Rastafari movement (of which he was a committed member), to a worldwide audience.

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Exodus

           By Bob Marley


Exodus! Movement of Jah people! oh-oh-oh, yea-eah!
Well uh, oh, let me tell you this:

 

Men and people will fight ya down (tell me why!)
When ya see Jah light. (ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!)
Let me tell you if you're not wrong; (then, why? )
Everything is all right.
So we gonna walk
All right!through de roads of creation.
We the generation (tell me why!)
Trod through great tribulation
trod through great tribulation.

Exodus! All right! Movement of Jah people!
Oh, yeah! o-oo, yeah! All right!
Exodus! Movement of Jah people! oh, yeah!

Yeah-yeah-yeah, well!
Open your eyes and look within.
Are you satisfied with the life you're living? hunh!
We know where we're going, hunh!
We know where we're from.
We're leaving Babylon,
We're going to our father's land.

 

One, Two, Three, Four
Exodus! Movement of Jah people! oh, yeah!
Movement of Jah people!
send us another Brother Moses!
Movement of Jah people!
from across the Red Sea!
Movement of Jah people!
send us another Brother Moses!
Movement of Jah people!
from across the Red Sea!
Movement of Jah people!

Exodus! All right! oo-oo-ooh! oo-ooh!
Movement of Jah people! oh, yeah!
Exodus!
Exodus! All right!
Exodus! now, now, now, now!
Exodus!
Exodus! oh, yea-ea-ea-ea-ea-ea-eah!
Exodus!
Exodus! All right!
Exodus! uh-uh-uh-uh!

 

One, Two, Three, Four
Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! Move!

Open your eyes and look within.
Are you satisfied with the life you're living?
We know where we're going;
We know where we're from.
We're leaving Babylon, yall!
We're going to our father's land.

Exodus! All right! Movement of Jah people!
Exodus! Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!


Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! Move!

Jah come to break downpression,
Rule equality.
Wipe away transgression.
Set the captives free!

Exodus! All right, all right!
Movement of Jah people! oh, yeah!
Exodus! Movement of Jah people! oh, now, now, now, now!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!

Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! uh-uh-uh-uh!

Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! Move!


Movement of Jah people! Move!
Movement of Jah people!
Move!
Movement of Jah people)! Move!
Movement of Jah people! Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people)!
Movement of Jah people)!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!
Movement of Jah people!

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Africa Unite: A Celebration of Bob Marley’s Vision

Directed by Stephanie Black

In 2005, to celebrate what would have been Bob Marley’s 60th birthday, his widow, Rita Marley, and several of Marley’s offspring staged a gala concert in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in celebration of the iconic reggae singer’s commitment to African unity. In addition to the concert, a week of Unicef-sponsored workshops, discussions and debates took place, in which delegates such as actor and human-rights activist Danny Glover and controversial Jamaican politician Dudley Thompson contemplated what it means to be an African descendant outside Africa. Young people from all over the continent also gathered to discuss their own roles in Africa’s future.

Africa Unite: A Celebration of Bob Marley’s Vision is Stephanie Black’s documentary of the event. Black has already given us the hard-hitting Life and Debt, which explores the destructive impact of the IMF and the World Bank in Jamaica, and H-2 Worker, which exposed the unbelievably exploitative situation facing Jamaican sugarcane cutters in Florida. In Africa Unite, she makes efforts to keep a political-activist focus intact, which is difficult, because much of the movie is devoted to bland concert footage. But the film’s most heartening bits come in testimony from the young Africans who will themselves make up Africa’s next generation of leaders. Also captivating is the sub-plot provided by Bongo Tawney, a poor, elder Rasta who travels to Ethiopia for the first time and who is visibly moved by what he encounters there.

On the downside, the film is generally disjointed. It is sometimes difficult to get a sense of how the events unfolded, and of the exact significance of each segment, as there is so much concert footage interspersed. The concert footage itself does not translate particularly well to the small screen; you probably had to be there to understand the magnitude of the concert, which lasted 12 hours and drew over 350,000 people. And no disrespect to Marley’s children, but every time I’ve seen them live, I wish they would leave their father’s work alone and concentrate on their own talents. But needless to say, as this concert was in celebration of Daddy’s birthday, every one of the Marley boys presents a classic number from the 70s, and for some reason, each feels the need to remain on stage for the entirety of his siblings’ performances, which only adds to the dragging sense of what features here.

The bonus concert footage fares little better than that on the main DVD, though a duet by Rita and Marley’s mother is kind of sweet. In contrast, there are illuminating, though brief, interviews with Rita Marley and several of Bob’s sons, giving some context to the proceedings in terms of their own views on Africa in general and Ethiopia in particular. In summary, although it’s hardly essential viewing overall, Marley fans will probably find something of interest.

Source:MepPublishers

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Africa Unite

                       By Bob Marley

 

Africa, Unite
'Cause we're moving right out of Babylon
And we're going to our father's land

How good and how pleasant it would be
Before GOD and man, yeah
To see the unification of all Africans, yeah
As it's been said already let it be done, yeah
We are the children of the Rastaman
We are the children of the Higher Man

Africa, unite 'cause the children wanna come home
Africa, unite 'cause we're moving right out of Babylon
And we're grooving to our father's land

How good and how pleasant it would be
Before GOD and man
To see the unification of all Rastaman, yeah

As it's been said already let it be done
I tell you who we are under the sun
We are the children of the Rastaman
We are the children of the Higher Man

So, Africa, unite, Africa, unite
Unite for the benefit of your people
Unite for it's later than you think

Unite for the benefit of your children
Unite for it's later than you think
Africa awaits its creators, Africa awaiting its creators
Africa, you're my forefather cornerstone
Unite for the Africans abroad, unite for the Africans a yard
Africa, Unite

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The Slave Ship

By Marcus Rediker

The Katrina Papers, by Jerry W. Ward, Jr. $18.95  The Richard Wright Encyclopedia (2008)

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music website > http://www.kalamu.com/bol/
writing website > http://wordup.posterous.com/
daily blog > http://kalamu.posterous.com
twitter > http://twitter.com/neogriot
facebook > http://www.facebook.com/kalamu.salaam

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books

For July 1st through August 31st 2011
 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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Debt: The First 5,000 Years

By David Graeber

Before there was money, there was debt. Every economics textbook says the same thing: Money was invented to replace onerous and complicated barter systems—to relieve ancient people from having to haul their goods to market. The problem with this version of history? There’s not a shred of evidence to support it. Here anthropologist David Graeber presents a stunning reversal of conventional wisdom. He shows that for more than 5,000 years, since the beginnings of the first agrarian empires, humans have used elaborate credit systems to buy and sell goods—that is, long before the invention of coins or cash. It is in this era, Graeber argues, that we also first encounter a society divided into debtors and creditors.  Graeber shows that arguments about debt and debt forgiveness have been at the center of political debates from Italy to China, as well as sparking innumerable insurrections. He also brilliantly demonstrates that the language of the ancient works of law and religion (words like “guilt,” “sin,” and “redemption”) derive in large part from ancient debates about debt, and shape even our most basic ideas of right and wrong. We are still fighting these battles today without knowing it. Debt: The First 5,000 Years is a fascinating chronicle of this little known history—as well as how it has defined human history, and what it means for the credit crisis of the present day and the future of our economy.   Economist Glenn Loury  /Criminalizing a Race

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The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

By Michele Alexander

Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama's political success and Oprah Winfrey's financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today... than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits. Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don't know the truth about mass incarceration—but her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that.—Publishers Weekly

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues


1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        

Enjoy!

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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posted 30 August 2010

 

 

 

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Related files:  Obama Remarks at Xavier University   Fifth Anniversary of Katrina  Katrina . . . somethin' 'bout a storm   Beneath the Bridge