Chris Uggen's Blog: the last line still reverberates, three decades later

Saturday, March 15, 2008

the last line still reverberates, three decades later

june jordan, via cole:

Poem for South African Women (1980)

Our own shadows disappear as the feet of thousands
by the tens of thousands pound the fallow land
into new dust that
rising like a marvelous pollen will be
fertile
even as the first woman whispering
imagination to the trees around her made
for righteous fruit
from such deliberate defense of life
as no other still
will claim inferior to any other safety
in the world

The whispers too they
intimate to the inmost ear of every spirit
now aroused they
carousing in ferocious affirmation
of all peaceable and loving amplitude
sound a certainly unbounded heat
from a baptismal smoke where yes
there will be fire

And the babies cease alarm as mothers
raising arms
and heart high as the stars so far unseen
nevertheless hurl into the universe
a moving force
irreversible as light years
traveling to the open eye

And who will join this standing up
and the ones who stood without sweet company
will sing and sing
back into the mountains and
if necessary
even under the sea:

we are the ones we have been waiting for.

2 Comments:

At 6:13 PM, Blogger S.S.STONE said...

Chis, this is really beautiful, thank you for sharing it with us.

 
At 5:37 PM, Blogger christopher uggen said...

glad you liked it. i love the rhythm and the momentum toward the end -- best read aloud, i'd say.

 

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