Pharaoh Nights

by Mensah Mkalimu

...i wanna just float in space &
suffocate on the silence of the universe.
...i wanna fly into the sun &
burn off my afrikan skin, so I can finally be
...i wish revelations would come to pass
so i could sit at interstellar picnics
and watch grandfathers cook venus fried chicken over
supernova grills...
and sometimes, 
i wanna dive to the bottom of the atlantic
and let the water fill my lungs, 
so i can see the villages of dead slaves express communal love
on the ocean floor.
...i wanna stop defining my faith...
and just go live with God.
...reality seems to be but just
historical books & quasi-logic, rather than
meaningful smiles & poems written in fertile soil.
...i think about the dead while my eyes are in the dark
and i cry, knowing the dead know a freedom
never meant for the living.
i think about planetary rotations &
just how many years it will take me
to reach my favorite star in the sky.
i drink the pharaoh nights, hoping to die from an overdose of beauty, 
and becoming a citizen of the Nth dimension.
...i wanna punch presidents
and kill my poetry, bury it under my rusty trumpet & bobby fisher dreams...
i wanna evoke the yoruba in me, and beg for an orisha to
find me pleasant enough to be a full blown abiku.

i long to be cosmic, cuz being human
is played out.
my flesh does what i wish, but what i wish
is to be spiritual, and my flesh does not compute.
penitentaries & plantation nightmares, 
constant reminders of my family's former slave existence becomes too much.
i wish poets were gods, words were seeds, thoughts were blueprints, 
then i would build a castle out of dark matter, plant jazz notes, 
create the work-up for black stars.
...i wish health care would mean making love
welfare would mean laughing at funerals in happy goodbyes
affirmative action would mean everyone strives to be better lovers
& earth/dwellers
and public education would mean everyone is responisble
if a child is illiterate.
I want to extract my soul
and wash it in the epicenter of the star of david
let it dry in the winds of torah
and re-insert it, becoming Yahweh-in-motion.
i drink pharaoh nights
...and the cosmos becomes my plasma.

...the pain calls me to sleep, and i wanna
give in to defeat & soak my feet in salts of slumber.
sometimes desires to be great become humorous, 
and i look in the want-ads, hoping
"black man with dead dreams" pays enough.
i wanna smoke the essence of fallen soldiers, 
breath napalm entries into the annals of time, 
stare at the blood pools of nations
letting their love go asunder and call it 
"a neccessary evil."
our humanity, sometimes, is shameful kill for religions
massacre for righteousness...
we are, sometimes, no better than
the evil we try to extinguish.
infanticide saves babies from our grotesque humanness
and ethnic cleansing keeps the world's colors
from being dynamic.
i drink pharaoh nights brewed between the legs of my womanspirit
...and womb liquid rocks my pain to sleep in the
reclaimation of my childhood.

...i wanna write a masterpiece for myself
and let the vowels unlock my self-understanding.
i don't know who i write for
...cuz these are god's words
for black people
read by all, written by me.
...i wanna do right & go through
the christ persecution, and be a martyr
just cuz the powers misunderstood me...
sometimes i laugh at the fact
that one of our greater mouthpieces
is a panther on death's row.
...i want the war to be over
so i can retire to tree poems &
sun sonnets, haikus about wintry blues &
tankas on tantric sex & recyclable
i wish i mastered erotic stories & masturbation secrets,
instead of nourturing a knack
for introspection & consciousness.
if i knew that, to know is forever, i would've
remained blissful in ignorance.
i drink pharaoh nights from prophet gourds
hoping to gather a legion of titans &
re-write the world's sorrow
into something a little more
humane than wishing for utopia
...and doing nothing to achieve it.  

a tunisian shroud surrounds the sound of my heart
and keeps the beats pure from the sonics
of dirty bombs detonating in villages.
an egyptian cotton cloth cloaks the
god coaxing in the nether reaches of my innerspace
and i keep the Creator's love to myself 
in fear
that someone may denounce my religion &
try to convert it.
souls from palestinian grave holes wrap my
feet into eternal sandals, so i might forever
walk in their path & document the unfairness of
their deaths.
america is an israeli state, 
muslims look up to a crescent moon for morals &
see unmanned bomber planes scouting their soil.
...i feel the burning of twin towers while i sleep
...i force myself to believe that
william cooper did not die on purpose
and that barbara lee
is safe with her one vote of democracy.
there is a reason why its been 20 years &
another bob marley has not surfaced to love us
...a reason why we know jesse jackson's a rolling stone
...a reason why kwesi mfume's appointment in the Advancement
should be questioned.
ramona afrika firebombs & row-homes in flames for
MOVE's ambition
...terrorism in its essence & dead real.
i drink pharaoh nights & go deaf from
police sirens
...and sip metaphorical similies until
i am nothing more than a revolutionary poem
with a desire to be read
...and understood.

Pharaoh Nights by Mensah Mkalimu

© Copyright 2002. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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