Friday, March 14, 2014

Assata in Oakland, a cento




You can't go on like that Sweetback.1
Sleepy Giant,
You have been resting awhile.2

Read what somebody sprayed on the yard-wide 4
years earlier and more. That's how you tell real time. It is here, it is there. 3
On bright madonnas. And a scythe 10

I will dream you a wolf
and suckle you newborn. 5
for more. A promise is just like money. 8

with unforeseen debilities. Time is neither 6
being the most the unquestionable the outstanding.9
who disappeared into the volcanos of Mexico leaving behind 7

a discreet veil, a lubricating ointment and,7b
I do not see any of it upon you to-day, or perhaps I am deceiv'd.11
ever you were when knotted steel.12

Steel bells, like the evil
unwashed Sphinx, towing in the twilight.
14


Footnotes  
Poem, Poet

1. Sweet Sweetback's Baadassss Song, from the Marvin Van Peebles movie
2. Africa, Langston Hughes
3. Santa Fe, Joy Harjo
4. Alaska, Gary Snyder

5. City of Fire, Joy Harjo
6. VII, Wendell Barry
7. Howl, Allen Ginsberg
7b. On Modern Applied Sciences, Roque Dalton
8. The Business of Fancy Dancing, Sherman Alexie
9. A Poem about Intelligence for My Brothers and Sisters, June Jordan
10. The Chicago Defender Sends a Man to Little Rock, Gwendolyn Brooks
11. This Compost/Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman
12. Endpapers, Adrienne Rich

13. Way Out West, Amiri Baraka

Photo credit Wendy Snyder 3.14.14 of Assata Shakur's poem "Affirmation" as street art in Oakland on Webster near 14th

No comments:

Post a Comment