Friday, May 2, 2008

Inspiration 3- A Poem by Kamau Daaood

Kamau Daaood is a pioneer of the spoken word movement. His poems are musical, influenced by jazz. They have been called "chronicles, incantations, portraits, invocations."

I am a devout poet. I believe that the right words offered in the right way can be music holding us together. When we can speak the language of essence, we will be able to commune in a space miles above dogma and the confines of individual traditions. And we can develop into evolved human beings capable of radiating profound love, light and service to others. I believe wholeheartedly that art in community is noble work that fosters beauty and meaning into our lives. That art is vital and necessary. I believe in the sacredness of breathing.

Kamau Daaood

Many of Kamau Daaood's poems in The Language of Saxophones got to me in a good way. The following poem THE MEN scored a home run.


for my sons


deep the space between father and son
deep the place where chests meet
fragile the air carrying words
from the male heart
difficult the eyes meeting

father, pass the story
and tell the secrets
son, humble the ears and cling
to the wings of the words
that carry the torch
of your son's song
on the tongue of your father
your grandfather speaks
of his father
to your unborn grandchild

clip the wings of ego that hinders flight
tip toe with clenched fist
in this hour of the breaking of chains
deep is the conversation
of bearded hearts
sacred the word that dwells there


in the firm gripping of hands
the silence of the male air
folklore of barber shops
shielded speech
muscle and stance
the music our fathers whistled
sweat and hue
hats that cover the head
minds full of stars and wonder
the spit shine of noon
the deep thighs of night
hard voice of reason
in the long scar of memory
you will find it....


i will show you the beauty of my scars
they are concealed beneath my skin
some given me by your mother
to teach me to see myself
i have many scars
i pull them out when i am alone
i read them like scripture
i bathe them in prayer and memory
i offer them to you in light


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