Friday, June 27, 2008

Just a Taste of Pamela Sneed

Pamela Sneed, who contributed TBLWTB, riffs about Zena, love and breath in "Oxygen." Enjoy.



And for your reading pleasure, "Popeye's" a wonderful poem featured in TBLWTB by the incomparable, Ms Sneed.

***

Popeye's

Never thought it would have ended this way or begun
15 years later survivors sitting in Popeye’s chicken,
downtown Brooklyn
Our coleslaw and mashed potato cups imprinted with
We Love Chicken
Us sitting quietly for hours, staring into the
afternoon
out of Popeye’s big glass windows
When we first sat down Colin smoothed his napkin
over his lap
I was impressed at how elegant he was for Popeye’s
our gold and silver rings glistening as we ate chicken
brought it to our lips
He and I think were very unlikely customers
but who would have thought decades later
we would be sitting together in Popeye’s,
sole survivors of a generation gone,
our brothers and sisters gone
from Aids and cancer
We came together accidentally through a show
where later funding fell through
But we determined bravely without question
as we always had both separately and together
to go on
that part of the legacy Donald Woods and Essex
Hemphill,
Audre Lorde, Assotto Saint, Pat Parker, and Marlon Riggs
had left us with was to fight
to never walk away without fighting
through whatever circumstance to keep going
We had at least Colin and I had the memory of Assoto
slamming his hand on the pulpit at Donald’s funeral
we know somewhere inside we must always tell the truth
Colin and I are the witnesses, our tribe’s counsel
we buried each of those men
we saw
and over the years we haven't spoken much
not even on this project
but today during a rehearsal
during the recitation of a poem
he grabbed my hand full of trust and innocence
held on
then let go
and for me even as a poet that moment
meant more than words.

1 comment:

EH said...

I worship this woman. I read her book often. Often.