For Amiri Baraka (1934-2014) Part 2 – By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jnr., Ph.D.

Some say

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he was confused

for having been


a front seat

on the bus…

he really

wanted to drive,

truth be told –

but he was not

confused at all;

he was only

richly endowed

with a

salty tongue

in his anger

against a society

and the culture

of a pale people

who had dragged him

and his sires

against the roaring

waves of the Atlantic

and landed in

Georgia against

their will,

dragged into a culture

too cruel

to recognize

and accept

it was all right

to be sun-burned

and proud

of yourself

and your kind…

a cruel culture

that only knew

how to use

and abuse

and then callously

discard and


those who had

sweated and bled

the most to


and make it great –

oh, no,

he wasn’t

in any way


for being refused

after giving

his all

to make

America great

and strong

as never before…


he wasn’t


at all,

he was only

sad and


to have lacked

the full

upper-body strength

to unleash

that deadly blow

against those who

only knew

how to rape

and exploit

and plunder

and abuse –

for abuse

is what racism

is all about;

it is what

Jim-Crow too

is all about;

it is also what


is all about,

also discrimination

and all that makes one

an unprovoked

outcast –

and so,

Uncle Baraka

was not


at all,

he was only

a brave soldier

who knew how

and when to

strike where

it hurt

the predator

the most –