How could you decode
The white skin, the grotesque minimalism
Of color, the haunting spaces,
Hidden in slaving years,
In gardens of a white supremist god.
The seed of the white Aryan
Drowns inside bamboo yellow crevices,
As they fill naval bases in the Philippines.
While the black man further
Dilutes the basins of milky white goddesses.
And in this luster of pale,
You find toothpaste skin, making
Foul mouths kissable.
And what else is there, in this crooked
World where, white rules,
Dictated as to how everything should be done,
And not. Decoding white was perhaps easy.
A race’s search for hegemony, the snowstorms
They brewed in search of dominion
Until the black, yellow and tanned waves rose
To clutter every niche,
Dispelling that myth we were fed with – that we were no good.
And still, white, those supremely
Angelic facades, that label flesh cartons,
Are still beautiful, in Godiva stints.
And what else is more captivating
Than the rise of color, what
No avalanche of snow can bury,
Nor that little black hole in the white eye
Not seem to obliviously fall.
I’m just a black man in southern Georgia
As dark as the Coca Cola bottle
Or as the corvids ruling a wasteland
I’m a contrast on my own right that few ever understand
Like the white shorts I’m wearing right now.
I’m black power, the zealot in me shouts
A livid doppelganger of me next to Malcom X.
I’m like George Washington Carver
The scientist lurks about through the underground
Tunnels of peanut pegs.
I’m like Lebron James, a power forward
That searches for a Black Jesus
After every dunk. I’m only as smooth and sweltering
As Denzil Washington’s smile.
I’m everything black; the coffee you cannot resist
Or the chocolate you cannot unthaw inside your salivated mouth
Or the pepper that garnishes the stuffed ravioli
Made from garden spinach.
How beautiful is it to be so dark, almost like midnight,
Not even a street lamp can light me up,
As I stare at the détente of color
Unbuckling from the harrowing gallows
Of the white man’s plague
Knowing that the fairness of justice is the only way
Tomorrow’s dawn can ever heal my guard,
Or breach my fort, like the first basketball
Gifted to a young Negro child,
From where expression takes off
– with looping wings
The long day, just got longer,
The chin too narrowed,
And claimed a little more of the curved edge.
This was after my trip into nostalgia,
Stopped somewhere in the mid afternoon.
There is nothing one can do
When nostalgia abruptly comes to a stand-still.
Nostalgia is not always
A tear-dropping handkerchief-wetting
Moment of careless pedigree,
No, sometimes, you are staring at the fog
Of light, we call the sun, taking notes of happenings
Around you. Still a foot, an eye or a rib
In the past is not always a bad thing.
Looking back, is solving those mysteries
Of the heart, which are just like,
Smarties or jellybeans, coming
Color-coded. The darkest being
The most ominous. And still we open
A pack, listening to Jon Secada
Singing “Just another day”,
But it rarely is. Its like unfolding
A pancake to find what the filler
Is – savory or sweet. And in that flat epiphany
You will start to believe that
All this bother, to recollect,
Is just an age-stamped edition
Of groping in retrospection.
And in that lesson of torment,
You haunt yourself with the past you,
And all you do at the end, is chase ghosts
Of the pasts, just to give you an
Extra zap, like a heart-quenching
A pure accident of the kismet kind
What else but lovers, embracing the two-fold blind
The bottom-big Barbie, like a true diamond called Kimberly
Was really a Sri Lankan lass, who moaned like a banshee.
They made pillows out of their generous suntan
In rituals of percussion, as buxom woman and wiry man
Making love was an euphemism, hyphenated by a short line,
A portmanteau in its most primal, like the tidal brine
Lovers’ lane, is a bed full, of crazy half-stunts
Geometry lessons that one learns, in explosions of grunts
Caught in a chemical monsoon, between lip and lip
Ushering in a crucible, alloying crevice and tip
So flesh turned sore, from toes to the skull
As love, the fender-bender, screamed to a lull.
Where are all the sparrows?
You question, looking at the smog
Turning the morning mist
Into plumes, darker than most shades of grey.
And those rice thieves are no longer
On any horizon, let alone marking,
Their presence inside human homes.
And in this climate of change
Of a slow apocalypse, you find
The tender threads of your heart
Searching for the meaning of nature.
Someday soon, there will inevitably be
The last sparrow, which unlike
The last few dodos would not have been killed
For their foolhardiness, only for
Its pathological desire to coexist,
Hitchhiking on civilization.