lifetsyle

Mr. Africa Poetry Lounge!

i. Mood Indigo


it hasnt always been this way
ellington was not a street
robeson no mere memory
du bois walked up my father's stairs
hummed some tune over me
sleeping in the company of men
who changed the world


it wasnt always like this
why ray barretto used to be a side-man
& dizzy's hair was not always grey
i remember            i was there
i listened in the company of men
politics as necessary as collards
music even in our dreams


our house was filled with all kinda folks
our windows were not cement or steel
our doors opened like our daddy's arms
held us safe & loved
children growing in the company of men
old southern men & young slick ones
sonny til was not a boy
the clovers no rag-tag orphans
our crooners/ we belonged to a whole world
nkrumah was no foreigner
virgil aikens was not the only fighter


it hasnt always been this way
ellington was not a street

Written by Ntozake Shange

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