Poem for the Liberation of Southern Africa

Etheridge Knight

have danced in ecstasy
(That's all-all I got
But for Love)
That leaps and sings across the sea
To the cell of Nelson Mandela
Sitting with his / own / self on Robbins Island
That precious prison of South Mrica,
While Nelson Rockefeller is hailing fellows
for burying bones in the prison moonlight of Attica-
( That's all- all
but for Love)
And Time and drums
Beating Black feet beating
The dust. Dancing. Memories
Like fire. Dancing. Feet
Dangling from a lynching tree
In liberated Mississippi-
(That's all-all
But for Love)
And white mission / aries becoming "revolution / aries"
And hiding their crosses
Between their legs-
They huddle in circles then hurry away
To demon / strate
(And sing your wet eyes 0 Mother Mrica.)
"LeaHet the banks."
"Down with the krugerrand."
"March on the embassies."
"No U.S. Troops in Mrica."
"Give 'em some white / pussy-
That's all them Africans want, anyways ... "
That's all-all
( But for Love)
And an ocean of us
Rising, reaching
Cause.-Cause? Yeah, Cause-'cause
I'm so busy
Pulling Charlie's foot outta / my / own / ass
And no job
And no land at / all
That's all.-All
I got- (But for Love.)

The Essential Etheridge Knight

Last updated May 16, 2023