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Favorite Poems of 2003



 
 
 
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The Climate Is Right
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
 
 
Racism has reared it's ugly head once more
Listen up black people time to even the score
For the sake of the children the world too
This racist behavior has got to be through
It's time to stand together to weather the storm
Cause some white folk have been misinformed

In our valiant efforts to be free
We were told to study and get a degree
Bachelor's, Master's, Ph.D.
Some people have them all
But they're no more free than me
The kind of person still working on a degree
University for you and me
Expand our minds
Improve these times

We have certain rights here as Americans
Which doesn't mean our heritage has to end
It's not as if we haven't done our time
We have paid our dues
Now you stand in line
Our founding fathers proclaimed liberty
But continued to practice bigotry
If you are a racist then you must face this
For this is a fact:

"We're black
We're beautiful
And we're coming back"

I'll ask you this people
Then we will be straight
Where were you
On April 4th in 1968
Perhaps you don't understand prejudice
Just in case you don't
Take a listen to this

Educationally and socially
We strive for elevation
In a segregated country
Using white intimidation
For hundreds of years
We've had time to reflect
Black people must now take full effect

English 101
Math 204
In sunny Boston
Upon the shore
200 brothers detained by the score
Not as a result of their own doing
But a white man who was deviant perusing
You see it's not a crime to say
A "nigger" did it
So a Boston D.A.
Took the ball and ran with it

We're not asking you for your pity
Not in this country
Not in any city
We just want to give you the facts
And put the freedom train back on it's tracks
Because Harriet's journey is about to be lost
And we won't let that happen at any cost
Because my mother and my father
But an effort forth
So I could cross the river
And come to the North

The beauty of our people
Has been noted throughout time
As long as our hands and mouths
Moved in rhyme
We often spoke of pain
And God's glory
Weren't fictional but factual
In telling our story

We speak of light eyes
Light skin and light hair
Listen up my people
We had better beware
When the powers that be
Call rank and file
Our place won't be with them
But somewhere on the Nile
Now that's not a problem
That's the way it should be
We've been warped
By images on TV
Farrah, Christie
And don't forget Cher
To be beautiful
We must have blue eyes and blond hair

But the women of color
Of every hue
Oil satin their skin
And bust out their doo
Gone are the days
Of skin lightener and pomade
Turn off the hot curlers
And show the true grade
Now don't get me wrong
Hair texture we won't debate
But don't abandon your culture
Because your hair is straight

The beauty is in knowing who we are
And helping out our people near and far
Again the name of this rhyme is THE CLIMATE IS RIGHT
It is the air we breath both day and night:

WE THOUGHT WE HAD FOUND OPPORTUNITY
AND WERE MET BY THE LOSS OF OUR LEGACY
WITHOUT UNITY THERE IS NO VICTORY
WITHOUT ECONOMY WE HAVE POVERTY
WITHOUT MONOGAMY THERE IS NO FAMILY
NO MORAL SENSE OF COMMUNITY
IN A SOCIETY
THAT THINKS HEAVILY
ON THE FIRST PERSON
IN THE FORM OF ME
GOD CREATED US ALL EQUALLY
THERE IS NO BIG DEAL IN US BEING FREE
THESE ARE THE FACTS OF LIFE
FOR YOU AND ME
MY LAST LINE IS PEACE BE UNTO THEE

PEACE!
 
 
 
 
Solitary Confinement
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
Sitting here with the passing of time
Wondering which evil induced this crime
To have me installed alone in this place
The guilt now shown in pain on my face
Like a lonesome traveler, tossed and torn
Here by myself, should have never been born
The musty stench of odors fills this room
My only outlook is certain doom
Huddled like soiled clothes strewn on the floor
Disgusted with this life, and wish for no more
Loneliness abounds and invades my mind
I think on things I left far behind
Tears come to the edge of my sanity
As harshly I blame everyone but me
Yes, I suffer the anguish of my solitude
Strike out, giving gestures oh so lewd
Time in this place like the spawn of black bass
Waiting and wanting for each interval's pass
Ever reminded that I am alone
The hum of silence a monotone
Don't look at me, don't dare take a look
I'm not a character found in a book
Don't need your pity, you don't rate
Knowing for sure my time and date
I won't write a novel, no need to share
I desire self-containment, I really don't care
I'd rather be here in confinement alone
Accepting Death-Row as my final home.


 
 
Rat Poison - A Narrative
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
Howling...painted images of red
bestow themselves
upon the perception
that is known all too well as death.  

I am not shaken
by its' clandestine revelation
of the uttermost
secrets of the heart.  

I am free of all anguish
that beset my soul
while you yet lived.  

The manic deprivations of a pale grey,
self-perpetuating group with no morals,
nor concepts of value,
have fallen into the depths of hell,
and I mourn not.  

I dwell heavily
in the knowledge
of your most tightly infused restraints,
and am no longer bound
by your daunting judgements.  

You,
a people who claim
to have harnessed science,
nature, and all facets of human-kind
are mere zombies of pretense,
and you cause me to regurgitate
the bile you lend as nourishment
for physical and spiritual development.  

No longer does your presence allow
the forfeiture of my process of thought,
and feeling to be constructed
by your standards.

You are now eliminated,
and I am at peace.

Though you may have once existed as great,
you have infected sanctuaries
with your demonic righteousness,
and I have taken
my vengeance
against you willfully.  

You,
and all the generations
of your kind hereafter
suffer from my vigilantism.  

My envy,
and indignation
was birthed
from a righteous nature.  

Your teasing
made me wrought
with discontent.  

I had no choice
but to dissolve the relationship.  

You were my greatest deception,
yet I forged on with the mask of adulation.  

We never possessed those things of this world.  

We were not persuaded by commercialism,
meager was our existence...  

Our minuscule habitations
made a mockery
of this implausible society.  

We remained hidden,
and tucked away in this desolate,
wayward junket called home.

I shout
from uncharted waters,
my recompense.  

I spat upon
this decadent social system
that is void of remorse,
and tends to distract its' personage
with words of strength and nobility,
while it's action lie in fierce contradiction.  

This state- of- mind I now hold dear is a mis-nomer.  

I too am an accomplice
that no longer yields
to an establishment
that yokes me
in the presence of my carnal self.  

This perpetual reality
deems itself responsible
for actions that I take,
and unjustly garners
cohesion's that weigh me down,
yet I am lifted...

For I am the final decision
in my ultimate decision making.

I have no amends.  

Most justified am I
to rid the world
of dysfunctional adoration,
and disease.

I,
who you looked down upon,
and jeered,
now laugh at inverted justice.  

I am only obliged
to self in this unabridged place.  

My mind races,
my body  convulses
at the coming of my demise.  

I have won the battle of consequence,
for I am no more...

And you,
you cease to be as well.  

Open the gates of hell
for there will be a flooding.  

I feel the death angel,
and I am shrouded in victory.  
Oh sweet victory,
no regrets,
no limits,
no more.  

I know
that there is
a strewn wasteland about.  

You water systems,
food warehouses,
and all that sustains you
have been contaminated,
poisoned.  

It is be ingested as we speak.

Great and small
will all meet this destiny
as once.

Yes,
your very foundation
now consumes "rat poison".

There is more than enough
for everyone.

Enjoy!
  



 
 
Blind Lovers Meet
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
From a distance I feel you watching
For I am blind, and cannot see
But I feel you softly peeking
At the very depths of me
Your eyes, by my mind's sight
Have whisked me from within
I know that what you're wanting
Is to be more than just a friend
You move closer to me
I feel your warmth invade
Your eyes begin their touching
My senses start an upgrade
You seat yourself in a chair
At the near left side of me
I feel you ever present
Though my sight won't let me see
My heart pounds like thunder
My hands begin to sweat
I'm falling deep asunder
For my sense of love beget
I am so close to you
Yet closer than you'd guess
You reach and touch my hand
My sense of touch be blessed
We long for the fragrance
Wild flowers fill our minds
We understand soft touches
This kinship's by design
You caress my cheek, I touch your chin
This seems all too acquainted
You are the masterpiece
My easel and brush have painted...

 
 
Distant Fragrance
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
She wondered in on a warm summer breeze
Her spirit was present in the elm trees
Her scent was that of honeysuckle so sweet
All hints of loss were hers to deplete

The shadow of her distant tale
Was one that reality would not curtail
The surreal is where she's been for a while
Roaming in dark shadows was not her style

She wanted to be seen, her beauty known
Her voice now stilted in a wispy tone
Between the then, and the now
She was lost in wonder, questioning how

Why didn't she meet her final rest
Just to lie down was her earnest request
But she could not settle not today
Unfinished business had found it's way

There was an unfamiliar presence in her abode
She was weighted down by it's heavy load
Pressing  upon her soul when she wanted to lift
Her knowing it's reason would deliver her gift

There she stood in harms threshold
She knew this scene about to unfold
As  she witnessed her widowed husbands face
Languishing on the woman who'd taken her place

Her death untimely and unexplained
What she had lost, this woman had gained
She was aware of what had to happen next
Her task was set in a prepared text

The haunting began with a searing smile
She knew she'd roam here for a little while



 
 
Nubian Woman
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
First
Eldest
Preceding the ancients
Hers is original
The origins of humanity
She, the Queen of Queens
3300 B.C.
As evidenced in history

Her eyes enable the rising and setting sun
The time before time
There was not history before her shine

Visit her tombs and ravage her treasures
Her statues are high and revealing
There are reasons why her face
Was dismantled
The truth was to be made untrue

Tiye
Queen of a dynasty
Nefertiti
Her grandmother's name
Princess Sitamun ruler of majesty
Kiya, the mother of Tutankhamen

Regal
Mysterious
Egyptian
Conquerors
Nubian Dynasty Delight
What a life legacy

Still reining
Still upon the throne
Beset to be
Woman in reality is me
I come from She

She is the root cause
Of the color of my destiny...
 
 
 
 
My Humble Attempt
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
It's hard to explain the mystery
Or why it is that I believe
The thought of a Heavenly deity
Is hard for some to conceive

I'll try my best to help you see
His glory my soul does entomb
I guess it's always been in me
Before I was in mothers' womb

When I was born into my family
My dad held me up to God and gave me back
From that day in my epiphany
I have been under Satan's' attack

For I know it is the devils mission
To go after the saints of the Lord
So I struggle with a carnal condition
One of which cannot be ignored

When I chose the valley instead of the hill
And did whatever I wanted
I was in my very own will
And believe me I was haunted

But when I came to this warming light
That made me feel the victory
I knew the fight was not my fight
I gave all to that deity

I could go on for volumes more
And still you may not comprehend
Jesus is standing at the door
It's your choice if you let Him in
 
 
 
 
What's The Yardstick For?
Renee Matthews-Jackson 2003
 
 
Eminence obtained.
Fame and monetary gain
Refraining from stardom
It may bring pain
Illusions of grandeur
Plastered on her brow
She is the essence
Of then and now

Down trodden
Face drooping
Hollow is her soul
As she trudges in the snow
In the bitter cold
Though she hums gospel tunes
In her spirit that's seen
All the ins and outs and the in between

Standing before the big screen
She is a motion picture show Queen
But beneath her lies the unseen
She can't manage to keep her nose clean
Million dollar dresses hide bruises too
Smiling faces seem stuck on like glue

What looks like success ain't alway true
Wearing the mask of measure is what we do

What yardstick do we use to measure success?
Is that old lady making her way to the bank any less?
Cause she has to walk instead of ride in a limo?
Braving insanity in the streets as she goes to and fro.
Now, somebody tell me is success hers to have and hold?
Is the movie star a person who is in the fold?

Can you tell me which one is happy, and which is sad?
Which one of these women is really having it bad?

We have to take off the blinders so that we can see
Things are not always as they appear to be
One man is no better than the next man
In reality we are all grains of sand

If what you've done in life has made you happy
Then that's success enough and then some for me
For the lady walking down the street by herself
Maybe her solace, and daily walk is her greatest wealth

Success can not be measured, if so by who(m)?
Certainly not by me, and I would think not by you.
If you are happy with the way you think and feel
Then you are a success, that's the best deal

 
 

 




 



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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