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Saturday, November 03, 2012


by Ngoma

some say they should have
named her karma
i'm not sure
if she was a conspiracy theory,
or an act of god
bible thumpers called her
a revelation
a halloween trick or treat
a politician's opportunity disguised as disaster
some claim it was punishment for sin
but churches were flooded too
steeples and oak trees in the wind
proof that global warming deniers can't ignore
we could say I told you so
and maybe this is a wake up call
as roller coaster rides are buried in the flood
and marathoners take up hotel space
while many victims have no food
or a place to lay their heads
bodies still being found
in flooded burnt out homes
with no escape by subways
filled with water like underground cesspools
as Jamie Curtis talks about survival kits on Jay Leno
and tells us to donate money to the Red Cross
yet to show up in Mount Vernon
with gas lines around the block
for gas stations that are empty
meanwhile the major news media
act as though disaster only happens in america
as the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Cuba
are ignored by major media
and there is no FEMA to guarantee votes for Obama on election day
suddenly we see what it may be like to live in a 3rd world country
where lack of gas and electricity is an everyday experience
and half the world is a disaster area
waiting for a relief concert to raise funds
that would not be needed if the wealth was redistributed
and warnings of global warming had been heeded

Ngoma is a performance poet, multi-instrumentalist, singer/songwriter and paradigm shifter who for over 40 years has used culture as a tool to raise sociopolitical and spiritual consciousness through work that encourages critical thought. A former member of Amiri Baraka's Spirit House Movers and Players and of the Contemporary Freedom Song Duo, Serious Bizness, Ngoma weaves poetry and songs that raise contradictions and search for a just and peaceful world. Ngoma was the Prop Slam Winner of the 1997 National Poetry Slam Competition in Middletown, CT and has been published in African Voices Magazine, Long Shot Anthology, The Underwood Review, Signifyin' Harlem Review, Bum Rush The Page/Def Jam Anthology, Poems On The Road To Peace (Yale Press) and Let Loose On The World: Celebrating Amiri Baraka at 75. He was featured in the PBS Spoken Word Documentary "The Apro-Poets" with Allen Ginsberg. Ngoma has curated and hosted the poetry slam at the Dr.Martin Luther King Jr. Family Festival of Environmental and Social Justice (Yale University, New Haven, CT) since 1996. He was a selected participant in the Badilisha Poetry Xchange in Cape Town, South Africa in fall of 2009. In December of 2011 he was initiated as an Obatala Priest in Ibadan, Nigeria.