ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

   

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Trane flies / across international skies / raining down notes

 melodic messages of hope /Better things to come

Mandela's rise / Kubila's triumph / mobutu's demise

 

 

 

Slo' Dance

Poems by Ted Wilson

with an Introduction by Amiri Baraka

*   *   *   *   *

 

Mobutu & Zaire

(for Elombe Brath)

                 By Ted Wilson

 

The night was a flatted 5th

on the 24th of the 6th

2 days into its cancerian descent

beyond the sun standing at its highest peak

flattened as it was

the night stretched longer

and it did so by degrees invisible to the naked eye

9 days before the annual resurrection

of red          white and blue glory

9 days left before the end of british domination

minus the beatles and brooks brothers

the 9 days of lent/till/black/red/yellow/green

or white beans as a staple fades for the next 2 months

unless they're swimming in a catsup-based bar-b-q sauce

 

Now          it all be hickory charcoal

with mayonnaised potatoes cabbage and elbow

macaronis jive time phonies

no fiber 'til fall

ribs chicken and variations of the beef

ground round shredded embedded

and reconstituted going with the 4th

 

reconstipated       I mean constituted meat and poultry

as if meat and poultry ain't the same

what a game

and the bowels on full time resistance to natural peristalsis

or whatever they call that part of the digestive process

anyway     no gain     no pain

 

As the flattened night yields to dawn

morning makes a sharp left

to a quarter note on a dime

turning 90 degrees to an obscure 6/8

Trane flies

across international skies

raining down notes

melodic messages of hope

 

Better things to come

Mandela's rise

Kubila's triumph

mobutu's demise

 

we look for a smoothness now

a mellow cooling out

mixing old      mixing new

coagulating       a new start      re-start

to build and re-build

to make the earth right       our birth right

 

Trane flies

on every tempo

across oceans of sound

with belief rising

from everyone of them

a sweetness from the balladeer

 

an offering of truth -- Proof

of the possibilities      an endless

nest of potentials

coming from the base

mentoring or massaging

the spirit     flying high

 

Climbing down

breatherizing that brass woodwind tube

blowing trumpet changes

from a drum chord with bass changes

melodically emanating from the keyboard

 

Did you know Stevie Wonder was his student

not seeing     only hearing      focusing

interpreting the changes

translating sound for mass consumption

another step forward to determine

why what where when how

the scene plays out with who

 

Mandela's not the end

and Kabila's not the beginning

it is a continuous flow of struggle lifting and raising mankind

in spit of itself

 

What if we did not come from africa

but to africa

Garvey's gift           a fan shaped mirror

 

Malcolm's tough sharp slicing tongue

DuBois' stamina belief insight and analytical patience

Fidel's return     an army of successful soldiers

schooled in guerilla science

 

 

What if we did not come from but to Africa

what if we did not come to but from Africa

and we did

no-no-no      no beginning, no ending

but a continuous flow of struggle and lifting

and lilting and struggle in spite of as Trane hands off to Stevie

and Stevie hands off to . . . and

on an on and on

as mobutu fades into a night of flatted fifths

 

alongside tshombe casavubu baby doc batista

and the rest of our mistakes

 

We stretch to take control of our existence

determine we do so by degrees    invisible to the naked eye

                                                           . . . over and out!

*   *   *   *   *

Source: Ted Wilson. Slo' Dance. Brooklyn, NY: Shamal Books, 2003 / Contact: Shamal Books, GPO Box 16, NYC 10116 (718) 622 4426

 

Ted Wilson, formerly with Pride and Liberator magazines,  is a writer, producer, and promoter, most recently with the Bread Is Rising poetry series in New York City.  A cultural worker since the 1960s Black Liberation/human rights movements, Ted's writings have appeared in several journals: The Black Nation; Black American Literature Forum; Callaloo; NOBO: Journal of African American Thought; and anthologies: Amiri Baraka: The Kaleidoscopic Torch (ed. J.E. Gwynne); In Defense of Mumia (eds. S.E. Anderson, T. Medina); Black Fire: An Anthology of Afro-American Writing  (eds. L. Jones, L. Neal); New Rain #9: Our Fathers/Ourselves (eds. G. Johnston, M. M'Buzi Moore)].  He also works as a Construction Manager Consultant and Developer currently involved in an effort to develop a Cultural/Arts district in Newark, New Jersey.

*   *   *   *   * 

Let Loose on the World
Celebrating Amiri Baraka at 75

Edited by Karen D. Taylor and Louis Reyes Rivera

intro by Mumia Abu Jamal 

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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

*   *   *   *   *

Greenback Planet: How the Dollar Conquered

the World and Threatened Civilization as We Know It

By H. W. Brands

In Greenback Planet, acclaimed historian H. W. Brands charts the dollar's astonishing rise to become the world's principal currency. Telling the story with the verve of a novelist, he recounts key episodes in U.S. monetary history, from the Civil War debate over fiat money (greenbacks) to the recent worldwide financial crisis. Brands explores the dollar's changing relations to gold and silver and to other currencies and cogently explains how America's economic might made the dollar the fundamental standard of value in world finance. He vividly describes the 1869 Black Friday attempt to corner the gold market, banker J. P. Morgan's bailout of the U.S. treasury, the creation of the Federal Reserve, and President Franklin Roosevelt's handling of the bank panic of 1933. Brands shows how lessons learned (and not learned) in the Great Depression have influenced subsequent U.S. monetary policy, and how the dollar's dominance helped transform economies in countries ranging from Germany and Japan after World War II to Russia and China today.  The Economy

*   *   *   *   *

The Gardens of Democracy: A New American Story

of Citizenship, the Economy, and the Role of Government

By Eric Liu and Nick Hanauer

American democracy is informed by the 18th century’s most cutting edge thinking on society, economics, and government. We’ve learned some things in the intervening 230 years about self interest, social behaviors, and how the world works. Now, authors Eric Liu and Nick Hanauer argue that some fundamental assumptions about citizenship, society, economics, and government need updating. For many years the dominant metaphor for understanding markets and government has been the machine. Liu and Hanauer view democracy not as a machine, but as a garden. A successful garden functions according to the inexorable tendencies of nature, but it also requires goals, regular tending, and an understanding of connected ecosystems. The latest ideas from science, social science, and economics—the cutting-edge ideas of today—generate these simple but revolutionary ideas: (The economy is not an efficient machine. It’s an effective garden that need tending. Freedom is responsibility. Government should be about the big what and the little how. True self interest is mutual interest.

*   *   *   *   *

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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If you like this page consider making a donation

online through PayPal

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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 / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

*   *   *   *   *

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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update 5 May 2012

 

 

 

Home  Louis Reyes Rivera

Related files: Slo Dance Reviews   Celebrating the Release  Acknowledgements  Slo Dance Table   Slo Dance Introduction  A Real Long Look   The Protector  Mobutu and Zaire

 From Gangs of the Ghetto to Gangstas of the Inner City