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

Hipness and Sorcery

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

Hipness and Sorcery

Article excerpt

I had to become a man

Marinate in the Black Experience

Bitch slap myself

Out of pre-conceived notions

Of who and what

Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong

Was all about

Begin to dig his genius and brilliance

His warrior hipness and sorcery of struggle

The rage behind the mask

The burning plantations in his eyes

The scarlet blood and screams of the lynched

That wavered in the sonic museum of his trumpet wails

The man cast spells wove curses in sonic cloth

Wiped his sweating brow with the blood of Jesus

While letting Shango electrify his soul

Scatted growled screamed with voice and horn

While remembering New Orleans where he was born

Another broke Black genius getting his due

How'd you escape the traps they set for you?

Congo Square was in your bones African Ancestors had your back

Hipness and Sorcery con...

Lifted you high on history's throne

Where you rule in rhythm before and now

With each screech you teach with each growl you plow

You mute walk miles with your style

You needed your "smoke" to keep you going mad

You needed your "high" to keep your eye on the sky

They made you a star in spite of themselves

In spite of the evil they cast like a net

Across this planet called earth

They couldn't read the code of your love and rage

Only saw the mask as you performed on the stage

What time I got left I'm going to spend with you

Take you in my ipod back to Timbuctou! …

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