Mr. Africa Poetry Lounge!

rise up fallen fighters

i've been married to bob marley
for at least 17 years
but i usedta call him smokey robinson
it's hard to remember i
waz underage at the time of our union &
changed my birthdate
so much i cant count the years
only the satisfaction

bob marley is my husband
whether our marriage is legal has to do
with where you live & if you think highly
of haile selassie/ the lion of judah
my children are hiding in toco forest
they swing on their rasta red hair/ climbin
jungle jims of lapis under the supervision
of the good colored men from uranus/
where all colored men are kindergarten teachers/
where they sing my husband's songs
where we exodus-ed outta here
where natural mystics
be jammin alla time &
they be raining joy on everybody house

i tell you no lie
bob marley take care of me
cuz he wanna give me some love
been knockin on my door three year
& he still here for sure
he jump
he scream
he shake
he head
he close he eye
he be in the promised land
he wait for me on star
he blaze
he sing
he wanna jam it wit me &
he dont wait in vain
he in the movement of the people
he jump
he scream
he shake he head
he close he eye
he head twirl from london to canal street
he braid fall from the sun
he see me
he lay his mark here
i reach for the world
he give it to me
i work   i rest   i love him in the air
i cd fondle the sky
watch kingston eclipse guiltiness
in the name of the lord
the lion of judah

david's warriors
rise up rise up fallen fighters
show me the promised land
show me round the universe
our fathers' land
rise up
announce the comin of the kingdom rightful heir
i climbin to the moon on the rasta-thruway
our father land
risin up
the land even sing & jump
the sky want to jam all thru the day
the stars forget they weakness
& dance
rise up fallen fighters
unfetter the stars
dance with the universe
& make it ours

oh, make it/ make it ours
oh make it/ make it ours.

Written by Ntozake Shange (1914-2018)


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