Hail the Heroic Mid-west Bank: Ferguson

Day 10 and heroic African-American youth,
Poor and working people of Ferguson are still
Standing tall, like Tunisians and Egyptians, like
Sowetoans, like Justice For Oscar Grant activists,
Like Occupy Oakland, like Occupy Wall Street,
Like the People’s Organization for Progress, like
Madison capitol occupiers, like Montgomery Bus
Boycotters, like Columbia University students,
Like 41st and Central Panthers, like Native Americans
On Alcatraz and at Wounded Knee, like ILWU Local 10
Still standing tall against SOBs— Sons of Bull,
Sons of Beauregard, Sons of Byron, Lester, George—
Robocop-clad confederates spitting tobacco juice-
Laced epithets, under Stonewall Jackson’s command…

Day 10 and heroic African-American youth, poor and
Working people of Ferguson are still standing tall against
Judas Quisling Steppin’ Fetchit house Negroz telling them to
“Get off the streets,” “Go home, “ “Go back to sleep, watching
Oprah, Ellen, reruns of ‘Roots’” Judas Quisling Steppin’ Fetchit
House Negroz who—any minute—might grab a good ol’boy’s
Baton and whip some black militant ass— “Didn’t I tell you
To get your black ass off the street— Didn’t I? Didn’t I tell you
To get in the house— Didn’t I?! Didn’t I?! Didn’t I?! Didn’t I?!”

Day 10 and heroic African-American youth, poor and
Working people of Ferguson are still standing tall, shoulder
To shoulder with activists from Motown, Chitown, Oaktown,
Philly, D.C., City of Angels, The Big Apple, like the
“Function At The Junction,” “‘cause everybody’s gonna
Be there/got people comin’ from everywhere—“ nothing
Sinister or conspiratorial, it’s solidarity, it’s proletarian
Internationalism, like when Chinese and Vietnamese
Issued statements supporting African-American struggles
During the 60s; like Abraham Lincoln Brigade fighters
Fighting side by side with freedom fighters in Spain; like
Cuban soldiers fighting shoulder to shoulder with Angolans and
South Africans defeating colonialism, weakening apartheid;
Like “outside agitator” King in Memphis in solidarity with
Striking sanitation workers, and “outside agitators” coming
With clubs, guns, teargas for anything Black and not crawling…

Day 10 and heroic African-American youth, poor and
Working people of Ferguson are still marching, becoming
Clearer that Mike Brown is Melvin Black is Malice Green,
Arthur McDuffie, Eleanor Bumpurs, Eula Love, Leonard
Deadwyler, Gregory Clark, Jerry Lee Aime, Rosewood, Black
Wall Street, Tulsa, MOVE, Philly, Tuskegee, Eric Garner…

Raymond Nat Turner is a NYC poet privileged to have read at the Harriet Tubman Centennial Symposium. He is Artistic Director of the stalwart JazzPoetry Ensemble UpSurge and has appeared at numerous festivals and venues including the Monterey Jazz Festival and Panafest in Ghana West Africa. He currently is Poet-in-Residence at Black Agenda Report. Turner has opened for such people as James Baldwin, People’s Advocate Cynthia McKinney, radical sportswriter Dave Zirin and CA Congresswoman Barbara Lee following her lone vote against attacking Afghanistan. Read other articles by Raymond Nat, or visit Raymond Nat's website.