Academic journal article African American Review

The Doves

Academic journal article African American Review

The Doves

Article excerpt

On the dashboard there is a panel of disappointment.

Buttons don't turn as they should. Switches don't summon

the pleasures they used to make manifest, like the heat.

Cars rattle and move along like the ancient things metal

becomes when it is turned into machines from its nameless

resting in the dirt. It has been a long and hard rehearsal,

and I have probably done something you don't appreciate,

so I let you talk about the old music. Demeanors were

more precise in the days when groups like the Dells,

the Temptations, the Four Tops, and the Doves

came out of the cold cement of poor streets to sing.

Their songs are used in commercials for fast food

and in big chill movies where people dance akimbo.

Memories of back doors blowing air into basements

with Mary Wells and black folk wearing long leathers

back when bruthas shined their shoes like mirrors to be

"the one. …

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