Martin and Mary Lou

by Farasi

Martin and Mary Lou*

 Niño in Lima
     Girl in Atlanta
          Daddy got dinero
               Mama got hunger 

Daddy be free 
     Mama be slave
          Niño sweeps for centimos
               Girl plays for their praise 

Martin be yellow 
     Mary be black
           Yellow you mellow
               Black you git back

Martin in church early 
     Mary in church late
          Martin healed beggars 
               Mary filled the blues plate

Martin did good
    Wound up adored
         But Mary Lou’s Mass
             Won’t be ignored

*Martin De Porres (1579-1639) Peruvian son of a slave, patron saint of mixed-race people, 
subject of “Black Christ of the Andes" by Mary Lou Williams
Mary Lou Williams (1910-1981) noted African American jazz pianist, arranger and composer

Editor's note:
This poem  was selected by Nubian Poets for its 2021 second place poetry award.

Martin and Mary Lou by Farasi

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