Blues For Barack - Work Song - Poem by peter bormuth
The glinty-eyed Roman faces in suits
that stand behind you
are all white, like the papers you sign.
the patrons at the bar in Birdland
would shout work work
when Lester lept into a solo.
I remember why he drank himself
in a small room at the Alvin. Do you?
There are nameless voices that cry out
from the Chattahoochee
Brickyard in Atlanta. Mr Backlash Mr Backlash
sweat & blood stolen like money
James W. English, First National Bank,
Coca Cola, Wachovia Securities
god bless the child that got his...
the abandoned graveyard of Tennesse Coal
Iron & Railroad
has been bulldozed
There never were any markers anyway
US Steel owns
the mine now but no memory
of the 30,000 black forced laborers
who died there
what compensation? Work work
there is a woman sitting in a tenament
to feed her child today. work work
there is a man sleeping on a piece
over an open grate
there is a crack whore turning tricks
a boy 'shamed
to go to school without shoes.
today we hear that there will be
of contraceptives. Work work
there are those who speak
without reading history
Pope Nicolas V started the slave trade
to convert the
'Moors, heathens, & other enemies of Christ'
What if i don't want your love?
show respect? ? ! !
Mr Backlash. Mr Backlash
The old ones said do what you will
& harm none
The native peoples advised
take only what you need
& give thanks
when the christians spoke
the light went out of those eyes.
there were black
overseers back in the slave days too
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