Canto CI

One formative moment of my teenage years
was when, on the school’s German excursion,
in a record store in Marx’s hometown, Trier,

a certain tape bum rushed into my vision,
Public Enemy’s Fear of a Black Planet,
complete with the thumb sized sticker that cautioned

about explicit lyrics. I had to have it,
to tear off plastic wrapping while ejecting
my previous ninety minute tape cassette

of De La Soul’s Three Feet High and Rising
and say goodbye to Hip Hop’s Daisy Age.
Of course, the lyrics stretched my understanding

of black issues, but their sharp focused rage
tapped into something I was yet to know
until I met the rich kids at college

and learned of privilege. Chuck’s rhymes pierced through
the plastic cling film ideology,
the sanctioned black culture of TV shows,

Lando Calrissian and Bill Cosby.
I looked as silly then as I do now,
a long haired, late thirties, round bellied whitey,

still shuffling, out of sync, to crashing breakbeats,
the shrill squeals, hearing Chuck and Flava’s voices
drop bombs, I’m too ridiculous to fake this.

Yeah Boooy, I know what fuckin’ time it is.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. peter litton
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 14:36:10

    Been here, read this.

    Reply

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