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AALBC .com Platinum Poster
Username: Carey

Post Number: 1583
Registered: 05-2004

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Posted on Sunday, January 25, 2009 - 02:16 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)


Well, here we are at the dawn of a new day. We have a new president and it's the start of a new year. Some things change and conversely, some thangs never change. Today I thought I'd do something a little different.

My usual diet of joking people will, for the most part, be absent from this stream of conscious little post. That's not to say that I won't drop a snide remark or poke fun at someone because, as I said, some things never change.

I was moved to write this kind of post after reading the one that Chris put on the board. It was someones take on the anaguration poem. That post not only detailed the intricate workings of poems, it talked about communication as a whole.

There will always be the transmitter of information (communication)and the receiver of such. Stop right there. Right there we have a problem. Oh lawd. We are about to switch over to the digital age of televison transmission signals. If I don't have a receiver that picks up that kind of signal, I am out of the game.

That's doesn't mean that my television isn't a nice television (like a good sound mind), I just can't get what they are saying.

Oh boy, what if I do have a matching television but they are sending something in a foreign language. Damn, I am fked again. Well, maybe not that but you get my point. No one is wrong, dumb or acting like an elitist.

Then, what if they are sending something I don't want to hear for whatever reasons, what now?. Oh lawd again. Those reasons are as varied as a grease pattern in the skillet after frying bacon. It would depend on the kind of bacon, the skillet, the slant of the skillet and the fire beneath it.

Let me get back. I think I might get a little sappy but .....

But this is my post so therefore I can get a little sappy if I want to. And ...

And, as I mentioned, there's the transmitter and the receiver. So ...

So, if you don't want to hear it, go to the next damn page. Now ...

Now, I wanted to talk about the poem and this board. When I first came to this board about 10 years ago, I didn't know what I was looking for or what I would get. I stumbled across it. There were not as many people visiting back then. Thumper was here doing his thang, Divivia was here (still here) and Troy still had 2 jobs. Thumper hit us with books like Jake Lamar's The integrationist and John A. Williams Clifford's Blues. Campbell's "Your Blues Ain't Like Mine", hit the floor along with Langston Huges's The Big Sky and I Wonder As I Wander. E Lynn Harris was in the middle of many discussions ( I still don't read his books). Oldies but still goodies were being discussed like Alice Walker's The Color Purple.

One person named "Si" came on the board with this: "I've been browsing this site for a couple of weeks and never contributed until recently, sitting on my hands and trying to operate from the Kenyan proverb: "do not say the first thing that comes to mind". And I want you to know I read you this morning and said to myself, "self, this is the sh... !"".

This person dropped something else that I feel compelled to share with you. It's a little wisdom. They wrote: " I must say that I truely respect ****** decison to exclude those books from their reading list. We cannot on one hand say it is the right of the author to write their own stories, using their own experiences, their own voices, their own realities, and at the same time expect the reader to exert his/her own right to decide that the next person's stories do not interest them. And futhermore, it is okay with me that ******* did not/has not commented on the rest of the storyline. Having found myself in similar situations, I simply would state "I don't care about the rest of the story". The operative word is "I" - it is my perogative and my right to state that <> I find it exciting that these exchanges are even taking place! We've come a mighty long way".

The person ended their post with a discussion with Thumper about the book, The Good Negress.

I could stop my post right there however I have to talk about "the" poem and the comments that followed.

I used to hate poetry. I wasn't feeling it, I didn't understand it or it's purpose. If Jack didn't run up a hill to fetch a pail of water, I was lost. I always wondered why the authors didn't simple "say it loud, am black and am proud". I didn't know the difference between a Haiku and a coo-coo. I didn't want to because it would have required me to think a little deeper and possibly inflat my ego. In my deep subconscience, I might have been experiencing a fear that others are smarter than me. Who wants to be made to feel less than? Nevertheless, I decided to move away from my knucklehead fears and see what all this mess was about. I don't want to imply that I have arrived ...oh no. But now I have somewhat of an understanding of the purpose of poetry which has allowed me to listen with an open mind.

Chris's post brought it all home. The following are parts that stood out to me. The post not only gave me a deeper insight into poetry, it made me look at communication as a whole.

The author of the article wrote:

"Ahhhhhhdidn't think it was read very well A common problem for poets (Lord help me), although I think Elizabeth read extraordinarily well. Not all audiences have read a good deal of poetry, therefore do not have an “ear” trained to recognize devices/elements. Poets have “voice”;

My comment: That speaks volumes to the difficulties of communication, the voice and the ear.

Author: Readers of poetry are not numerous, a persistent dilemma. <> The initial thought lost itself -- the commonality, ending reference to song "walking" </strong>Note preposition: praise song for walking forward in that light.

Me: I tried to stay away from his critic of the poem, because it's his opinion and he knows more than me. I focused on things that made sense to me, a poor sole like me.

Author: Reading poetry not a rational process? One of those altered states things, perhaps. Do we actually know during meditation, or do we just experience? .<>. It reads better, but I think it lost connectivity from beginning to end -- not tied together, nor a flowing thought All about us is noise and bramble, thorn and din. THIS IS METAPHOR, as in 1) Green tree agendin/Poor sinner stands atremblin (Sing Low, Sweet Chariot, Af Am Spiritual)
Literally, the tree is bending, the si nner is bending as the storm rages; a visual comparison between UNRELATED THINGS –

My comment: See, that is what I was missing from poetry. I knew what they were trying to say but i just wasn't trying to hear it.


Comment: Even in that above little jewel, some could miss it. If one didn't know the basis to algebra the buck stops there, turn out the lights. His "E= MC2" is wrong from the jump AND some could ask what the hell does a+b = c mean?

Author: The last line (we walk into that which we cannot see) is reminiscent of II Corinthians 5:7: (For we walk by faith, not by sight).

My comment: I got the connection to "blindness" yet I do not agree with the faith part. Faith is a whole issue in itself.

2) &nbs p; The first line of the last couplet asserts the infinite potential of humans and the infinite possibilities of human existence: In today's sharp sparkle, this winter air, anything can be made, any sentence begun. I love that the poet meshes this idea of infinite possibility with language.

My comment: I too loved that!

Date: Wednesday, January 21, 2009, 1:45 PMDear Elizabeth,

Indisputably canonical: Wallace Stevens conceptual, Walt Whitman colloquial, WB Yeats visionary, Malcolm X courageous (say it plain -- YES!!!), Gwen Brooks metaphoric elegiac cadence.

In today's sharp sparkle, this winter air, anything can be made, any sentence begun.
On the brink, on the brim, on the cusp -- praise song for walking forward in that light.

My comment: Ouuuuuu Weeeeee, that's some good sh..!

The piece continues: We encounter each other in words, words spiny or smooth, whispered or declaimed; words to consider, reconsider.

Comment: that is so right.

The piece ended with words of wisdom. I would suggest all read it. I loved it.

Now I am going to end on what some might consider sappy but again, it's my sap.

From day one, I loved coming to this board. We all visit here for different reasons.

I didn't know what I was looking for but I found a few friends. I've talked with them on the phone and have had lunch with them. My wife was a great lover of books and coming to the board enhanced or relationship. Thumper and she used to carry-on like school kids, forgeting that I was even around.

I've learned a few things about communication and the limitations of such. Coming here has filled voids in my life. I've received tips on new books, music, and electronics that I can never afford. This experience has made me think before talking (for the most part). Its shined a light on the persons words and not their title. We don't know the professions of many that post and therefore that does not get in the way of their words or our replies to them. I've learned that it's okay to disagree and come back on a different note. I've learned the importance of believing in oneself and not be deterred by the opinions of others. I now know that "funny", ain't funny to everyone. I've called people "she" when they were a "he" and I had to see if what I was saying still applied.

In short, we all come for different reasons. We are setup to receive information in different ways. Some come with a cynical approach. Others come to get their laugh on and talk a little sh**. The lurkers come to look at all the fools arguing And to get a tip or two. There's the kneejerkers and the naysayers, the creeps and the disgusting mouths. There's the professionals and the postal workers, the book worm and the librarian. There may even be some that have not read a book in a year. It's a party yawl. Young, old, black and white, there all here. It can be a place of comfort, everybody knows your name. Some have said, fk this place it ain't my kind of party. Some leave in disgust because they didn't get what they where looking for or someone didn't agree with them. It's a safe place. There's no drinking and no guns. Momma's here and Daddy too. If you get to far out of line someone might tell you to sit yo' black ass down. That bit of wisdom has seen some take their ball and run home. Lawyer and doctors have visited, ex-cons too. Great minds and silly ones have graced Thumper's Corner. It's a party yawl. Get your thang on. It's a house built on Troy's dream. I doubt if his dream was quite like this but here we are. If you are sitting at home with your breath stankin' and your hair uncombed, you are still welcomed. If no one responds to one of your post, don't worry, shoot another. If few agree with you, that's okay, as long as you are cool with it.

I love coming here and will keep coming back!


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AALBC .com Platinum Poster
Username: Kola_boof

Post Number: 4910
Registered: 02-2005

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Posted on Sunday, January 25, 2009 - 02:36 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Been-to poetry is the best poetry, Carey.

It is more in the style of songs you sing.

In my book "Nile River Woman", I wrote
sparse 1-page poems but it can be epic.

Definition of Been-to writing:

(a) You are from Africa (which is all black
people) but you have been to somewhere else
for such a long spell that your writing is now
shaped by both places.

Africans back home call us "been-to" writers.

Aretha Franklin is called a "been-to" singer.

(b) The writing can be read or sung.
It is told in Black traditional Folk "cuts"
with call and response or a percussion
break. Storytelling is of a Fabulist mode.

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"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Chrishayden

Post Number: 7709
Registered: 03-2004

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Posted on Monday, January 26, 2009 - 10:38 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)


That was DEEP, man
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Veteran Poster
Username: Thumper

Post Number: 763
Registered: 01-2004

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Posted on Tuesday, January 27, 2009 - 02:21 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hello All,

Carey: I agree your post was deep and on point. I hope you don't mind, I'm not trying to make you sad or anything but can I talk a little about Miss Ann? You know, after reading Sugar & Spice the other day and writing the post for it, I thought about Miss Ann. I thought about how I would have came on and raved about the book and I would have told Miss Ann to make you get her the book. How I would say that you was blocking her from getting the book and she would write back that you did not stop her from do anything she wanted to do. *big smile* What a pip!

Now that I'm back, I have to say that I miss her terribly. I know she would have made you type a post telling me all of the good books that I missed out on and I would have read every one of them. I just had to say it. I hope you don't mind.
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AALBC .com Platinum Poster
Username: Carey

Post Number: 1594
Registered: 05-2004

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Posted on Tuesday, January 27, 2009 - 10:31 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)


Well Thump, I know you didn't intend to make me sad but you did a good kind of way.

What many may not understand is that Ann never hit the board. Her exchanges with you were through me, I was her special kind of fool. She wasn't a Internet type person but as you know, she was a ferocious reader. After a night of one of her all night reading thangs, she used to get on my nerves waking me up and telling me to tell you something. We were making out or budget one day and your name came up. I said to her, when did Thumper have anything to do with OUR budget. She said, "but he said this book was the bomb". I told her that she should then go get the money from you. Yeah Thump, you brought back memories.

I often open up one of her books and see little references to you. It might simply say, "Thumper's suggestion". I believe one such book was, The Step Between by Penny Mickelbury. Another was My Soul to Keep by Tananrive Due. In the back of that one it says, Merry Xmas Love ...hope you enjoy the book ...Your Man, Carey.
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AALBC .com Platinum Poster
Username: Kola_boof

Post Number: 4925
Registered: 02-2005

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Posted on Tuesday, January 27, 2009 - 01:13 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)


I hope you know that Ann was a lucky
woman to have you, too.

Not a lot of men stand by their
woman through such an ordeal...and
we both know that your love for her
has never died.

I thought she was a beauty and I used
to love staring at the photo of you

In this country, when you see such
an effortless and photogenic example of
true love, it really holds up the sky.

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AALBC .com Platinum Poster
Username: Carey

Post Number: 1595
Registered: 05-2004

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Posted on Tuesday, January 27, 2009 - 03:51 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thank you, Kola

I've been blessed to have strong black women in my family. The pictures below are of my wife, my grandmother, my mother and my daughter. Four generations of black women, I didn't need to find role models, I lived with them. I had male role models as well but these women showed me how to be a good person, male or female. My grandmother showed me how to give love. She was the mother of 10. My mother showed me the importance of a women's voice in the house and how they express it. She continues to show me the rewards of having a belief in God. When I was locked up I called her one day for help and she told me that she had given it to God. She told me to pray. She's 84 and doing fine. I get to see my wife in the face of my daughter, they look so much alike.

Four generations

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