Spotlighting Pan-African Poetry

Biography

Who Killed McDuffie?

Enlarge poem

a definitive question

his brain was bashed
cranium crashed
skull fractured/broken
all the way around
but they said those who beat him
didn’t kill him
so who killed mcduffie?
maybe it was the same ones who didn’t kill
clifford glover/randy heath/jay parker
claude reese/randy evans/luis baez
arturo reyes/bonita carter/eula love
elizabeth magnum/arthur miller
and countless others
when their fingers slipped or
they musta tripped
maybe it was the same ones
who didn’t kill
jose torres/zayd shakur/fred and carl hampton
jonathon and george jackson/joe dell
twyman myers/spurgeon winters
and a few hundred others
perhaps it was those who didn’t kill
lumumba/che/amilcar/biko/fanon/
mondlane/marighella/cordero
and quite a few thousand more
do you suppose it may have been those
who didn’t kill
the indians and mexicans
who didn’t steal african peoples
halfway across the planet
who didn’t loot our customs/cultures
religions/languages/labor and land
who didn’t steal a continent
and claim that they discovered it
who didn’t bomb the japanese/
vietnamese and boriqua too
do you think it might have been those
who didn’t kill at
attica/watts/dc
detroit/newark/el barrios
at jackson state, at southern u
at the algiers motel
who didn’t shoot mark essex for
16 hours after he was dead
ask them and they’ll tell you
what they didn’t do
but they can’t tell you
who killed mcduffie

maybe it was one of those
seizures unexplainable
where he beat himself to death
it wouldn’t be unusual
our history is full of cases where we
attack nightsticks with our heads
choke billyclubs with our throats
till we die/
jump in front of bullets with our backs/
throw our selves into rivers
with our hands and feet bound/
hang ourselves on trees/in prison cells
by magic
so it shouldn’t be a mystery
that nobody killed mcduffie
he just died the way
so many of us do
of a disease nobody makes a claim to
the police say they didn’t do it
the mayors say they didn’t do it
the judges say they didn’t do it
the government says it didn’t do it
nixon says he didn’t do it
the fbi/cia/military establishment
say they didn’t do it
xerox/exxon/itt say they didn’t do it
the klan and nazis say they didn’t do it
(say they were busy in greensboro and wrightsville)
i know i didn’t do it
that don’t leave nobody but you
and if you say you didn’t do it
we’re right back where we started
looking for nobody who killed mcduffie
you remember nobody don’t you
like with de facto segregation
where they said the schools were segregated
but nobody did it on purpose
like when they said there’s been
job discrimination for years
but nobody did it intentionally
that’s the nobody we’re looking for
the one with the motive
to kill mcduffie
and you see, we MUST find
this nobody who slew mcduffie
because the next person
nobody will beat/stomp/hang or shoot to death
won’t be mcduffie
it’ll be you or someone close to you
so for your own safety
you should know the pedigree of
who killed mcduffie
you should know the reason of
who killed mcduffie
you should remember all those forgotten
who died of the disease
nobody
makes a claim to
so we won’t be here asking
who killed you.

**In 1979, Arthur McDuffie, a Black man, was riding his motorcycle in Miami when police chased him, knocked him off his bike, and beat him to death, crushing his head with billyclubs and flashlights.
During the trial that followed, all the police were found not guilty. The Black community launched a massive rebellion that rocked Miami and sent shock waves throughout the country.

Harold Lee Rush

Featured Poem:

Mozambican Mystery, Misdirected Woo and Chocolate Economics

Enlarge poem

Mozambican Mystery
Last night I died in Casablanca
And found my heart in Malawi
I watched the stars in Madagascar
And sailed across the Galilee.

I walked the fields in Mozambique
And climbed the hills of Tennessee
I caught the sun in Buenos Aires
And chased the moon in Sicily.

I met the Rose of Spanish Harlem
We danced all night in Tripoli
She followed me across the ocean
And we made love from dawn till three.

I was reborn in Abu Dhabi
I found my soul in Waikiki
Tonight I’ll sleep in Costa Rica
And live a life that’s winterfree.

Misdirected Woo
It was a dark and lonely tale
of misdirected woo
when they discovered quid pro quo
are difficult words to chew.
And when all is said and done
at the end of this sordid story,
it was apparent that all involved
were bound for purgatory.
To accelerate the inevitable,
they were executed two by two
and thus we end this lonely tale
of misdirected woo.

Chocolate Economics
some people swear white chocolate is the best,
more pure and better, they say;
but with so many delicious varieties, how can one truly tell?
There’s the Swiss chocolate, I guess it’s grown in the Alps
or the German chocolate from right across the border.
What about the British chocolate
or the rare chocolate from China;
how different are they from Hershey’s
or chocolate from the Motherland?
Is there chocolate in Spain, fancy or plain;
from the Congo or Nome, how about Bahia or Rome?
And we can’t forget chocolate covered cherries
which must grow on vines in heaven,
on the corner of Dark Street and Rich Avenue
right next to Chocolate Mousse Gardens.
This is just a chocolate planet, from north to south,
east and all through the west;
I think I’ll tour the Earth’s chocolate islands
and find out myself which is best;
I’ll keep a little for my personal use
and sell you chocolate junkies the rest.

Mozambican Mystery, Misdirected Woo and Chocolate Economics by Harold Lee Rush

Download the audio file

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Comments

  1. Harold Lee Rush, Congrats to you on this accomplishment.
    I love this and wish you the best in your Poetic adventures. The music is right, the voice is super and the rhythm is one of peace. Thanks for .haring

    pam murphy

Your email address will not be published.

Biography

Harold Lee Rush appeared in the first Black-produced dramatic TV series in the U.S., “Bird of the Iron Feather” on Chicago’s Public Television Station WTTW. During this time, he also performed with various Black theatre organizations in a variety of roles.

In 1982, Harold’s broadcasting talents were discovered at Chicago’s WGCI radio as the producer and co-host of the powerhouse morning show, first with Bob Wall (as the only Black-White morning duo in a major market), then with Doug Banks, where Rush created the “Front Page” segment, which has been copied in morning shows across the country. In the decade at the Gannett-owned company, Rush hosted broadcasts all over the U.S. and around the world, including London, Senegal, Jamaica and the Bahamas, becoming one of the most well-known media personalities in Chicago.

Rush has also authored internationally award winning poetry and is much in demand as a Spoken Word artist. 2005 brought Rush to WKKC FM, the official radio station of the City Colleges of Chicago as a Broadcaster and Instructor for students in the Media Communications Programs.

You can hear “Live with Harold Lee Rush” Tuesdays & Fridays 10AM – 2PM CT on 893FM WKKC and www.WKKC.FM.

Website: www.HAROLDLEERUSH.com 

 

Harold Lee Rush

Biography

Harold Lee Rush appeared in the first Black-produced dramatic TV series in the U.S., “Bird of the Iron Feather” on Chicago’s Public Television Station WTTW. During this time, he also performed with various Black theatre organizations in a variety of roles.

In 1982, Harold’s broadcasting talents were discovered at Chicago’s WGCI radio as the producer and co-host of the powerhouse morning show, first with Bob Wall (as the only Black-White morning duo in a major market), then with Doug Banks, where Rush created the “Front Page” segment, which has been copied in morning shows across the country. In the decade at the Gannett-owned company, Rush hosted broadcasts all over the U.S. and around the world, including London, Senegal, Jamaica and the Bahamas, becoming one of the most well-known media personalities in Chicago.

Rush has also authored internationally award winning poetry and is much in demand as a Spoken Word artist. 2005 brought Rush to WKKC FM, the official radio station of the City Colleges of Chicago as a Broadcaster and Instructor for students in the Media Communications Programs.

You can hear “Live with Harold Lee Rush” Tuesdays & Fridays 10AM – 2PM CT on 893FM WKKC and www.WKKC.FM.

Website: www.HAROLDLEERUSH.com 

 

Who Killed McDuffie?

Enlarge poem

a definitive question

his brain was bashed
cranium crashed
skull fractured/broken
all the way around
but they said those who beat him
didn’t kill him
so who killed mcduffie?
maybe it was the same ones who didn’t kill
clifford glover/randy heath/jay parker
claude reese/randy evans/luis baez
arturo reyes/bonita carter/eula love
elizabeth magnum/arthur miller
and countless others
when their fingers slipped or
they musta tripped
maybe it was the same ones
who didn’t kill
jose torres/zayd shakur/fred and carl hampton
jonathon and george jackson/joe dell
twyman myers/spurgeon winters
and a few hundred others
perhaps it was those who didn’t kill
lumumba/che/amilcar/biko/fanon/
mondlane/marighella/cordero
and quite a few thousand more
do you suppose it may have been those
who didn’t kill
the indians and mexicans
who didn’t steal african peoples
halfway across the planet
who didn’t loot our customs/cultures
religions/languages/labor and land
who didn’t steal a continent
and claim that they discovered it
who didn’t bomb the japanese/
vietnamese and boriqua too
do you think it might have been those
who didn’t kill at
attica/watts/dc
detroit/newark/el barrios
at jackson state, at southern u
at the algiers motel
who didn’t shoot mark essex for
16 hours after he was dead
ask them and they’ll tell you
what they didn’t do
but they can’t tell you
who killed mcduffie

maybe it was one of those
seizures unexplainable
where he beat himself to death
it wouldn’t be unusual
our history is full of cases where we
attack nightsticks with our heads
choke billyclubs with our throats
till we die/
jump in front of bullets with our backs/
throw our selves into rivers
with our hands and feet bound/
hang ourselves on trees/in prison cells
by magic
so it shouldn’t be a mystery
that nobody killed mcduffie
he just died the way
so many of us do
of a disease nobody makes a claim to
the police say they didn’t do it
the mayors say they didn’t do it
the judges say they didn’t do it
the government says it didn’t do it
nixon says he didn’t do it
the fbi/cia/military establishment
say they didn’t do it
xerox/exxon/itt say they didn’t do it
the klan and nazis say they didn’t do it
(say they were busy in greensboro and wrightsville)
i know i didn’t do it
that don’t leave nobody but you
and if you say you didn’t do it
we’re right back where we started
looking for nobody who killed mcduffie
you remember nobody don’t you
like with de facto segregation
where they said the schools were segregated
but nobody did it on purpose
like when they said there’s been
job discrimination for years
but nobody did it intentionally
that’s the nobody we’re looking for
the one with the motive
to kill mcduffie
and you see, we MUST find
this nobody who slew mcduffie
because the next person
nobody will beat/stomp/hang or shoot to death
won’t be mcduffie
it’ll be you or someone close to you
so for your own safety
you should know the pedigree of
who killed mcduffie
you should know the reason of
who killed mcduffie
you should remember all those forgotten
who died of the disease
nobody
makes a claim to
so we won’t be here asking
who killed you.

**In 1979, Arthur McDuffie, a Black man, was riding his motorcycle in Miami when police chased him, knocked him off his bike, and beat him to death, crushing his head with billyclubs and flashlights.
During the trial that followed, all the police were found not guilty. The Black community launched a massive rebellion that rocked Miami and sent shock waves throughout the country.

Featured Poem:

Mozambican Mystery, Misdirected Woo and Chocolate Economics

Enlarge poem

Mozambican Mystery
Last night I died in Casablanca
And found my heart in Malawi
I watched the stars in Madagascar
And sailed across the Galilee.

I walked the fields in Mozambique
And climbed the hills of Tennessee
I caught the sun in Buenos Aires
And chased the moon in Sicily.

I met the Rose of Spanish Harlem
We danced all night in Tripoli
She followed me across the ocean
And we made love from dawn till three.

I was reborn in Abu Dhabi
I found my soul in Waikiki
Tonight I’ll sleep in Costa Rica
And live a life that’s winterfree.

Misdirected Woo
It was a dark and lonely tale
of misdirected woo
when they discovered quid pro quo
are difficult words to chew.
And when all is said and done
at the end of this sordid story,
it was apparent that all involved
were bound for purgatory.
To accelerate the inevitable,
they were executed two by two
and thus we end this lonely tale
of misdirected woo.

Chocolate Economics
some people swear white chocolate is the best,
more pure and better, they say;
but with so many delicious varieties, how can one truly tell?
There’s the Swiss chocolate, I guess it’s grown in the Alps
or the German chocolate from right across the border.
What about the British chocolate
or the rare chocolate from China;
how different are they from Hershey’s
or chocolate from the Motherland?
Is there chocolate in Spain, fancy or plain;
from the Congo or Nome, how about Bahia or Rome?
And we can’t forget chocolate covered cherries
which must grow on vines in heaven,
on the corner of Dark Street and Rich Avenue
right next to Chocolate Mousse Gardens.
This is just a chocolate planet, from north to south,
east and all through the west;
I think I’ll tour the Earth’s chocolate islands
and find out myself which is best;
I’ll keep a little for my personal use
and sell you chocolate junkies the rest.

Mozambican Mystery, Misdirected Woo and Chocolate Economics by Harold Lee Rush

Download the audio file

How does this featured poem make you feel?

  • Amazement (0)
  • Pride (0)
  • Optimism (4)
  • Anger (0)
  • Delight (6)
  • Inspiration (1)
  • Reflection (0)
  • Captivation (1)
  • Peace (1)
  • Amusement (0)
  • Sorrow (0)
  • Vigour (1)
  • Hope (0)
  • Sadness (0)
  • Fear (0)
  • Jubilation (0)

Who Killed McDuffie?

Enlarge poem

a definitive question

his brain was bashed
cranium crashed
skull fractured/broken
all the way around
but they said those who beat him
didn’t kill him
so who killed mcduffie?
maybe it was the same ones who didn’t kill
clifford glover/randy heath/jay parker
claude reese/randy evans/luis baez
arturo reyes/bonita carter/eula love
elizabeth magnum/arthur miller
and countless others
when their fingers slipped or
they musta tripped
maybe it was the same ones
who didn’t kill
jose torres/zayd shakur/fred and carl hampton
jonathon and george jackson/joe dell
twyman myers/spurgeon winters
and a few hundred others
perhaps it was those who didn’t kill
lumumba/che/amilcar/biko/fanon/
mondlane/marighella/cordero
and quite a few thousand more
do you suppose it may have been those
who didn’t kill
the indians and mexicans
who didn’t steal african peoples
halfway across the planet
who didn’t loot our customs/cultures
religions/languages/labor and land
who didn’t steal a continent
and claim that they discovered it
who didn’t bomb the japanese/
vietnamese and boriqua too
do you think it might have been those
who didn’t kill at
attica/watts/dc
detroit/newark/el barrios
at jackson state, at southern u
at the algiers motel
who didn’t shoot mark essex for
16 hours after he was dead
ask them and they’ll tell you
what they didn’t do
but they can’t tell you
who killed mcduffie

maybe it was one of those
seizures unexplainable
where he beat himself to death
it wouldn’t be unusual
our history is full of cases where we
attack nightsticks with our heads
choke billyclubs with our throats
till we die/
jump in front of bullets with our backs/
throw our selves into rivers
with our hands and feet bound/
hang ourselves on trees/in prison cells
by magic
so it shouldn’t be a mystery
that nobody killed mcduffie
he just died the way
so many of us do
of a disease nobody makes a claim to
the police say they didn’t do it
the mayors say they didn’t do it
the judges say they didn’t do it
the government says it didn’t do it
nixon says he didn’t do it
the fbi/cia/military establishment
say they didn’t do it
xerox/exxon/itt say they didn’t do it
the klan and nazis say they didn’t do it
(say they were busy in greensboro and wrightsville)
i know i didn’t do it
that don’t leave nobody but you
and if you say you didn’t do it
we’re right back where we started
looking for nobody who killed mcduffie
you remember nobody don’t you
like with de facto segregation
where they said the schools were segregated
but nobody did it on purpose
like when they said there’s been
job discrimination for years
but nobody did it intentionally
that’s the nobody we’re looking for
the one with the motive
to kill mcduffie
and you see, we MUST find
this nobody who slew mcduffie
because the next person
nobody will beat/stomp/hang or shoot to death
won’t be mcduffie
it’ll be you or someone close to you
so for your own safety
you should know the pedigree of
who killed mcduffie
you should know the reason of
who killed mcduffie
you should remember all those forgotten
who died of the disease
nobody
makes a claim to
so we won’t be here asking
who killed you.

**In 1979, Arthur McDuffie, a Black man, was riding his motorcycle in Miami when police chased him, knocked him off his bike, and beat him to death, crushing his head with billyclubs and flashlights.
During the trial that followed, all the police were found not guilty. The Black community launched a massive rebellion that rocked Miami and sent shock waves throughout the country.

Comments

  1. Harold Lee Rush, Congrats to you on this accomplishment.
    I love this and wish you the best in your Poetic adventures. The music is right, the voice is super and the rhythm is one of peace. Thanks for .haring

    pam murphy

Your email address will not be published.