Posts Tagged ‘Free doom-Gil Scott Heron’

In Response to “Contradicting Contradictions”

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

Where was this passion all semester?! I feel as if spoken-word should be performed exactly the way each author performs it. I’m almost afraid to label it a performance. Speaking a poem rather than having to type it in print opens the door for emotions to be free. When I read Sylvia Plath and Amiri Baraka poetry I can see their passion in their words and punctuation on the page and attempt to read each piece as active as they may read it if they had the opportunity to let their emotions be wild and free on stage. I don’t think I know about the Staceyann Chin performance that you are talking about. To say that Staceyann is  “acting” like an angry black women is to judge and marginalize her performance, to remove Staceyann Chin from her piece, and to throw her into an archetype of an “angry black woman”: this is where I find the issue. I would say that Stacey Chin is being an angry Stacey Chin. The closed mindedness is when to categorize and lable wild free emotions to help you understand it. You basically put the wild free emotion back in a cage when you use “acting like an angry black woman” as a description of art.  I wanted to talk about the saxophone player that most likely looked forward to having the honor of playing along with Amiri Baraka.  However, I do feel that Amiri chose to have a white saxophonist to add to the message of the poem. The poem that we watch by Amiri Baraka broke the allowance of white people, in this country, to always be free from guilt. While they blame the colored people that live in this country (not just black people).  The class fell right back into what Amiri Baraka was trying to break.  The white man became the victim and Amiri Baraka was laughed at.  I wasn’t surprised. Consider Kanye West’s video with the white ballerinas (do u think those ballerina were unfortunate too) and the black people as civilized having dinner(Kanye west took it a step past black and white because even the black people wouldnt accept the women he brought to dinner because she was different and wanted to lable her as weird and strange because of their closed mindeness.) The same point was trying to be made by Amiri I would guess to have the white people do the work and perform for black people for once.  But if we go as far as to say that it was strategic by Amiri Baraka we already begin to criminalize him because we are saying that it was premeditated.  So Molly I must say that I do have a problem with you “nearly ripping your hair out when Amiri hooed like an owl.”  You did not understand the symbolic significance of the owl within the context of the poem so your closed mind could only laugh to set you free from your mental prison as Amiri Baraka successfully got under your skin and aggravated you. I’m sure there are more unfortunate saxophone players out there.  I was very disappointed how the class responded to Amiri Baraka’s poem how we weren’t as open minded as we act. Now look at Kanye West’s Video After we saw Amiri Baraka where will your brain take you.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thEQlaqhHeY

In Response to “A Far Cry From Africa”

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

I personified Africa as is it were crying from a far in, “A Far Cry From Africa”

In the first four lines of the poem Walcott describes the terrain and the state of Africaand how like the Kikuyu, who have an agricultural economy, other countries like America have benefitted from African people or Africa’s natural resources like diamonds and coffee.  If other countries would have left Africa alone there would probably be less corpses scattered through the paradise. “Only the worm, colonel of carrion, cries”: Colonel-a French and English word, parts of Africa have been colonized by the French, English nation have stolen Africans. Carrion-Anglo French word as well meaning rotting flesh. Colonels of carrion are the worm. Think of an apple with a worm in it borrowing through destroying the entire apple for its own health. Colonels of Carrion cry out, “Waste no compassion on these separate dead.” Clinton did not save Africans as soon as he could, many countries turn a blind eye to Africa and their troubles and consider Africa dead already. “Statistics justify and scholars seize”- Do not underestimate the half meanings in this poems, they speak for themselves. “The salient of colonial policy”- colonial to me goes back to the British embarking on the new world, pushing the natives out and setting up shop on new land, colonialism is the begininning of a rotting apple due to a worm that is colonialism. The term color white is innocents not the race in the first stanza: “What is that to the white child hacked in bed?” “To savages, expendable as Jews?”: similar to how Jews were murdered in the Holocaust.  Africa has been “threshed out by beaters” and the white dust from the beating of Africa spreads like white birds(ibises) whose cries have wheeled since the dawn of civilization where all humans come from. The uprightman seeking his divinity (spread of Christianity) by inflicting pain. “While he calls courage still that native(natives dread what he calls courage)/ dread of the white peace(white peace-death) contracted by the dead.”

“Again brutish necessity wipes its hands/ upon the napkin of a dirty cause, again/ a waste of compassion, as with Spain,/ the gorilla wrestles with the superman.”-gorilla, a wild or native animal that must be colonized by a white superman. At least Walcott curses the drunken officer of British rule. Walcott does not betray both, he gives back what they give through poems like this. How can he have both forces dwell in him and not be enraged? He asks, How can we turn from Africa and live?

The Sea = History

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Walcott is very awesome and I disagree that he is sexist for all you ladies out there who perceive his work as sexist.  I just think that he, like most poets transcend the notion of gender and if he loved a women then he loved her but he does consider the veil over people and he will not let a women trick him through lust for her.  On the other side of that a women could, rather than continue to feel trampled on by society, see themselves as having power over men because of the tools they possess-brains, seduction, being oppressed- women are the double edged sword, but please slice for good  and not for evil.  The man is a weak race that feels empowered when they belittle your powers so don’t be discouraged and read literature through the masculine lense that will always be there for you since the Man wrote History his way. Speaking of History I’d like to discuss “The Sea is History” because it brings in colonizing, Religion, and a bit of gender and I’m sure it could link to the long poem “The Schooner Flight” in several ways I just haven’t taken time to make the connections yet.  The Sea is Deep and so is “The Sea is History” but once you jump into the deep end you always wonder what it would feel like to touch the floor of the pool so I didn’t stop swimming until I felt something solid. What I retrieved from this piece has a lot to do with the search for Truth, a lot to do with the beginning of the Earth, a lot to do with The New and Old Testaments, a lot to do with Jesus, a lot to do with bodies of water.  When we think of bodies of water we think of people like Christopher Columbus and other Spanish colonizers who colonized and justified it through the spread of Christianity.  Walcott talks about “Sir’s” in this poem. I believe the “Sir’s” in this poem could possibly be colonizers(white male Dominance, enslavers, capitalists, chasers of gold, chasers of Truth by any means). Consider the questions that the Sir’s are asked: “Where are your monuments, your battles, martyrs?/ Where is your tribal memory? Sirs” After addressing the Sirs Walcott takes us the notion of heaving oil- drawing oil from underground or even under water which is a capitalist effort nowadays. Walcott takes us through the Old Testament, starting with Genesis when God creates the world and appoints man as his regent, but man proves disobedient and God destroys his world through the Flood but preserves a righteous man, Noah, and his family. The new post-Flood world is equally corrupt, but God does not destroy it, instead calling one man, Abraham, to be the seed of its salvation(Wikipedia). The capitalist ship has set sail in the Third stanza “Caravel(spanish or Portuguese sailing vessel)/ and that was Genesis). However, there is some negativity associated with those caravel’s some packed cries, a little shit, some loud moaning and what not. Exodus, the second book of the bible is next when Moses leads the people out of Egypt.  Bone is addressed twice in this poem, first in the fourth stanza as being soldered by coral to bone but “benediction of the shark’s shadow” is even more interesting because the shark is similar to the whale in its uniqueness in how it is a massive scary creature but the difference is that it does not come up for air and that it is a predator of the water and must continue to swim to survive similar to capitalism in a way. Capitalism and business is ruthless and could care less about poor individuals. The better the fruit is for your health the more expensive it is. If the fruit is healthy and tastes good, double that. The Ark of the Convenant and the Ten Commandments are addressed in the fifth stanza (I would go line for line but I’m hoping you’ve read this far haha) “Then came the plucked wires of sunlight on the sea floor the plangent(loud) harps of the Babylonian bondage, as white cowries(the highly polished, usually brightly colored shell of a marine gastropod of the genus Cypraea,  as that of C. moneta (money cowrie)  used as money in certain parts of Asia and Africa, or that of C. tigris,  used for ornament(Dictionary) clustered like manacles(handcuffs) on the drowned women- so in the sixth stanza we have money and bondage, I’m not fond of math so you do it. The “drowned women”  could be women in general and their preoccupation with shiny things because the first line of the next stanza begins, “and those were the ivory bracelets” or we good escape the surface level interpretation and says it is in fact the Song of Solomon or the  Song of Songs (Old Testament) has often been interpreted as a parable of the relationship of God and Israel, or for Christians, Christ and the Church or Christ and the human soul, as husband and wife(Wikipedia).  In the tenth stanza capitalism is addressed again and so is the Flood: “of the tidal wave swallowing Port Royal(In the late 17th century it came to serve as the base of operations for buccaneers and privateers who raided the Spanish islands and ships. When the notorious Captain Henry Morgan(a Sir) established his headquarters there, the plundered gold poured in, followed by merchants and artisans who eagerly catered to all the appetites of the pirates (dictionary).)/ and that was Jonah(swallowed by the large fish for three days and then lived to tell about it) Question to the Sirs in the last line of the tenth stanza:”Where is your Renaissance-a renewal of life, vigor, interest, etc.; rebirth; revival (dictionary).? This questions is answered: “Sir, it is locked in them sea- sands out there past the reef’s moiling shelf, where the men-o-war floated down; strop(nautical word for strap) on these goggles, I’ll guide you there myself(Shabine like). I’ll now just point to major words that speak to my interpretation cause this is getting long:”Colonnades of coral”, “Weighted by its jewels”, “Gomorrah”- wicked place, please look up what the book of Lamentations was about in the bible!

I skipped to the major turn in the poem at the 18th stanza where “the spires lancing the side of God.” A spire is like the steeple at the top of a church or one could interpret this as the crucifixion of Christ on the cross. The next stanza is “as His (God’s) son set, and that was the New Testament. Women are brought back up, “White sisters clapping to the waves progress, and that was emancipation(equality between races, genders, etc.). Still no History, “only faith”-belief that Jesus rose from the dead, “then each rock broke into its own nation(Pangaea), “then came the synod(laws of the church, assembly)”

“with their sea pools, there was the sound like a rumor without any echo// of History, really beginning”- His Story or History.  I think Walcott is suggesting that the enslavers and colonizer’s History or Culture is that they were prophets for God even though they were enslaving people and stealing their land for capitalist reasons. Slaves were taught Christianity and were also abused on the bases of Christianity. Christianity became their only Hope for Freedom.

 

In Response to and in connection with, “Let’s talk about “Lesbos,” baby…”

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

I have been waiting for someone too bring up, “Lesbos.”  I’ll give you my interpretation of this poem.

Viciousness  in the Kitchen!: beware of excited punctuation in poetry it may not be anger all the time but with “Viciousness” it can not be pleasant…Hiss:snake/serpent…Hollywood, windowless: symbolic meaning of the flower holly is a “stubborn victory won”,no windows, no good, Hollywood is facade…The flourescent light wincing on and off like a terrible migraine: no windows, light wincing, migraines suck, no bueno…And I, love, ama pathological liar: lowercase “L” in “love”, lying is bad…Her face red and white, a panic: the color red connoting negativity here and white innocence, panic…The bastard’s a girl: fatherless, two female parents…You say i should drown the kittens. Their smell!/You say I should drown my girl./She’ll cut her throat at ten if she’s mad at two: kittens so innocent, drown them? double meaning of “drown”Drown an innocent girl?cut her throat at the age of ten if she is mad at the age of two, no hope?…I should sit on a rock off Cornwall and comb my hair./I should wear tiger pants, I should have an affair: repetition of “should” tells me she is getting bad advice from the lesbian that wear the pants in the relationship…Meanwhile there’s a stink of fat and baby crap: You think the innocent smell of kittens is too much?, leaving the domestic chores unattended smells much worse, “fat” connotes idleness, and laziness… The sun gives you ulcers, the wind gives you T.B./Once you were beautiful./In New York, in Hollywood: How can nature hurt someone? followed by acted, we have learned of the dangers of Hollywood, botox for facade fame, Country Vs. City…The impotent husband slumps out for a coffee./I try to keep him in,/An old pole for the lightning: Holly was thought to defend from lightning. following the entrance of the husband in the second stanza i do believe she refers to him for the rest of the poem. however, I say I may be back./You know what lies are for.: it could be her talking or him, i think its the husband that left the women because of the last line…Even in your Zen heaven (reincarnation) we shan’t meet.: second time because of the lesbo bad influence in the first stanza saying to the speaker, “I should have an affair./ We should meet in another life.