Academic journal article The Journal of Pan African Studies (Online)

The Poets

Academic journal article The Journal of Pan African Studies (Online)

The Poets

Article excerpt

We are supremely honored to have the privilege to assemble this collection of poets from throughout Pan Africa and the Afro-Asian-Indigenous world. We are simply elated to present a variety of poetic expressions from North American Africans of every region. We think the reader shall find what Diop called the Cultural Unity of Africa, a kind of basic mythological order in the deep structure of the poems, expressing the eternal unity of a people, no matter their post traumatic slavery stress syndrome. We see the ancestors, the gods, the living and yet unborn are represented widely by poets from Africa, the Caribbean or America, suggesting the long held notion that African survivals are alive and well, not only in the mythology but psycholinguistics as well.

Concerns include the necessity of calling upon the ancestors and gods, the election of Obama, the continued contradictions of the democratic society in America and the emerging democracies in Africa. Ancestor Emmitt Till is called upon by several poets, including Al Young, Opal Palmer Adisa and others. Shaggy Flores mentioned Till and other tragic heroes of our liberation struggle.

Marvin X and Kalamu Ya Salaam mention the sheroe Dessie X. Woods or Rashidah Muhammad, the valiant woman who killed her rapist in the south, emancipated from prison; she went north and lived an activist life until her transition. The people of Oakland honored her with a street naming.

In dedicating this issue to the Journal of Black Poetry, we were conscious of Dingane's effort to make poetry a tool of communication for liberation. …

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