Friday, August 28, 2015

“No Name in The Street” by James Baldwin: A review

 

nonameinthestreet“No Name in The Street” is the title given to a work of art James Baldwin penned in 1972. This production of a master wordsmith chronicles certain events of his life up until that point. It’s poignant that the words he forged 42 years ago are still razor sharp and piercing in regards to the times and issues of today. His words then, as they are now, are glowing red hot concerning the issues of today. It is a great failing of American society and culture that these words, this wisdom titled “No Name in The Street” has been meat in the pot of American sub consciousness for nearly half a century, and the same words are still said and still, fall on deaf ears and dead hearts. The same passionate reactions and same pin point accuracy that “No Name in The Street” voiced about race relations, police brutality, and the injustice of the American system labeled justice, has not changed. The attitudes that birth and nurse these demons of society have only evolved and added technological ways of camouflaging themselves, but the same bitter and rotten blood that Baldwin wrote of still pumps vigorously through America’s veins.

 

I would not say that is an autobiography in the traditional, or what a publisher would ask for sense. “No name in The Street” does not follow the liner path that has become the rule-of-law prescribed to modern and most autobiographies. The book does open with him writing about his childhood but what he does write about circles the relationship between his older brother and father. The book then jumps about twenty years or so to his time in France, witnessing the brutality that Algerians were suffering. Baldwin, like Langston Hughes, marveled at how well the French treated him as a Blackman from America, shellshockingly different from the treatment he had received in America. Baldwin, like Langston, soon came to see that was only spared the tragedy of American style hate in this society because at that time in France it was already in use and they focused it upon North Africans. Baldwin, like Langston, eventually had enough and could not idle hemisphere away while witnessing a people not his own suffer like his people whom were being brutalized in America and eventually left.

 

In “No Name in The Street” Baldwin gives praise to the Black Panthers, something that very few black public figures did at all at that time and rarely ever did openly. He addresses how the police were constantly on guard and the instigators with the panthers. How the media painted the panthers as violet gun totters but never spoke of the community programs that were started by the panthers. Baldwin even wrote about how it frustrated the police that the panthers were not in possession, even in the smallest amount, of the fear that the they attempted to instill. Baldwin also speaks of his depression having spoken with Malcolm X and Martin Luther King face to face weeks and even days before they both were assassinated. He wrote that the new suit he brought to meet Martin and then for an event with Malcolm also became the suit he wore to their funerals and how he could never bring himself to ever wear that suit again. The suit also became an entry way back into the neighborhood he grew up in and showed him how much he had transitioned from what people thought they knew about him to what was actually the truth about him.

 

By Christopher F. Brown

 

 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Hip Hop from the artist perspective. This is interview I conducted at thelegengspanel.com, go check it out

 

 

http://www.thelegendspanel.com/entertainment-blog/hip-hop-started-in-the-heart-and-is-still-there-an-interview-with-the-artist-y-jelal-laluddin-huyler

Friday, August 7, 2015

Ghosts In Shells

 

in between shadows

the sounds of quiet in the night

riding the backs of afternoon breezes

caressing the cold outsides of windows

 

existing as someone

other

Something

other

 

only in touch

only in sound

 

a hand on the back of a neck

its not there

pressure and heat compressed against lips

its not there

memories of fragrances navigating auras  

They are not there

 

fires by moonlight

rivers deep beneath earthen floors

 

lingering far beyond the time

the time to begone

 

It's over

still

It's not done

 

©Christopher F. Brown 2015

 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

A Parsec Away

 

On the planet where I live

gambling and narcissism

are recognized for the diseases they are

 

racism and homophobia

that's just people being people

 

Here

having a conversation with some is battle

mental exhibition bouts with jaw juggernauts

most only listen for their position to pounce

Never hearing a thing

 

favors and helping hands

well laid traps and plans sewing deeply rooted weeds

intended to bind over time

your worth is assessed by how much value you can acquire for other

 

animals are measured greater than people

it makes sense

People have yet to meet or even be human

 

Here

I'm not the type of Blackman you see on TV

 

six feet tall maybe taller over three hundred pounds

a well-read autodidact master of many things

 

On the planet where I live

that is considered a threat

 

Here

the goal is to populate Mars

before the pollution on Earth becomes inhospitable

to the people of Earth

after all

Mars is ours for the taking

 

Here

you're supposed to mow your neighbor's lawn

while your back yard is overgrown

while your kitchen burns down

 

On the planet where I live

all of this is common knowledge

some say sense

It's spoken of and considered

immoral and deplorable

 

Here

if you exist in any different or other way

you're labeled

one of the crazies and shunned

you’re supposed to know its wrong

not admit to it

 

© Christopher F. Brown 2015

Sunday, August 2, 2015

VIP

 

I’m not one for

Status and Privilege

 

I don’t want or need to be

Exclusively VIP

 

I don’t need a special thing

Just for me

Just because

 

Yes

I am a unique and wonderful creature

 

Yes

I can do many things most can’t

 

Yes

Some times

Most times

I’m the only one

 

We all possess god given abilities

Natural unlearned talents

 

the cheetah naturally being seven steps ahead of its prey

the sun issuing forth heat and light

 

Tell me

 

When you look across the hunting ground

do you not see the pack of hyena

 

When you gaze upon the night sky 

Hypnotized by the twinkling stars

 

Do you see only one

 

©Christopher F. Brown 2015

 

Friday, May 29, 2015

3rd radio spot

Here is my 3rd time on the radio with Chris Stroffolino and Monae Dawson at9th Floor Radio. thank you again for having me back

Partially Other



ninety-five percent of life is subject
choice and change

that five percent
is mostly formed by birth
this five percent
is mostly formed in childhood

I keep saying
but they don’t trust
its fine

they keep asking me

why don’t you do that
this way
why don’t you make this
that way

they don’t understand
or believe
maybe

its part of the five

I keep asking them

what if we did this
that way
why don’t we make that
this way

they don’t believe
or understand
maybe

its part of the ninety-five

©Christopher F. Brown 2015

Friday, May 22, 2015

I'm not trying to fuck I'm trying to see you in 3D

 

 

Is it really this hard

to find people I can go back and forth in discussion with

about Buddhist and Hindu theology compared and contrasted against Christian and Yoruba

 

I want to scream and shout and dance with somebody over Janet Jackson's new album

and at the same time

feel the heat and talk with somebody about how extremely sad and depressing

but oh so good Giovanni's Room was

 

I want to be able to speak with somebody whom can quote Malcolm X and Kafka in the same breath

 

Somebody who could see the logic of Pac and Immortal Technique on the same piece

with the Budos Band or Mulatu on the back track

 

I want to know people whom know

just exactly who

Suki Lee and Bayard Rustin are

 

can we talk about Jacob Kinohoor's ass

at least for a moment

then get into some B.B. King or Johnny Cash

 

have you seen Dune

the one from the eighties

James McAvoy shirtless

as well as John Goodmans acting

were only good things about the other

if you read it

even better

 

what about the spook that sat by the door

Or

killer clowns from outer space

 

let's be shady and point out all the inaccuracies on the history and discovery and channels

praying for that day

that's not in February

They show Shaka Zulu in full

without commercial interruption

 

Or maybe a documentary about native American people

with actual native actors

that do not depict them all as either

plains people

Or Inuit

Cause you already know

not everybody is Eskimo

 

then let's put on our own private production of legally blonde

followed by encore presentations of the classic scene

Of Miss Celie and miss Ofelia going in over Harpo

 

can I discuss with you

how the Patriot act nullifies everything in constitution

And the bill of rights

even though they never were intended to be permanent any way

 

It would be nice to not have to explain a Corporatocracy

 

all my life Ive been into Egyptology

You do know that Imhotep was the actual founder of medicine

by a good 2000 years

not that Hippocrat

 

the thing is

I'm still learning

 

when attempting to delve that deeply into people

which I don't even consider that deep

They often misunderstand

They often concluded without thinking

 

maybe

just maybe

 

©Christopher F. Brown 2015

 

 

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
 


Pen to Paper & Finger to Key © 2008. Design by: Pocket