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Award winning writer, activist, and educator Ed Garnes, founder of From Afros To Shelltoes & Sweet Tea Ethics, is featured on Episode 16 of Dr. Regina Bradley’s Outkasted Conversations?, a critically acclaimed dialogue series dedicated to thinking about the cultural and academic implications of the hip hop group Outkast.

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What We Need Now Is Not Another Blues Poem

Submitted by on January 8, 2009 – 2:20 pmNo Comment |

The following joint is an excerpt from award winning writer Edward M. Garnes, Jr’s highly anticipated poetry collection Like Sweet Tea On A Hot Summer Day.

What We Need Now Is Not Another Blues Poem (In Memory of Oscar Grant)

by Edward M. Garnes, Jr.

get down Mayfield
way down
darker than
the bluest blues

brother Curtis,
we need a luv song
Mississippi tree hanging funk
not too radio friendly
something BET
will refuse to play
cuz it’s truth
will ring louder
than our IPHONE
ring tones

get down Pryor
way down
darker than
the bluest blues

brother Richard,
we need to find the funny
chitlin circuit
slap yo mamma
just to get over
Mudbone stories
bout Kunta & nem’
youtube will ban
cuz we may learn
why Dave Chappelle
did the watusi
back to mutha Africa

get down Davis
way down
darker the bluest blues

brother Ossie,
we need a spiritual shout out
tax free
sweet tea
on a hot summer day
good word
more Malcolm X
than Creflo
squeaky wooden floor preachin
not be televised
cuz we chantin down babylon
one mo gin’

get down Hughes
way down
darker than
the bluest blues

brother Langston,
we need a fine clothes to the Jew poem
more reason than rhyme
just got paid
Friday night food stamp
good time Sally
sure to get us fired
Last Poets tested
Amiri Baraka approved joints
so we can
finally
get our dreams
out of layaway

ed-train Award winning writer, educator, counselor, and activist Edward M. Garnes, Jr. is the founder of From Afros to Shelltoes: Art, Action, and Conversation, a nationally acclaimed series of cultural productions confronting the social divide between elders and hip hop heads, and holds a B.A. in English Writing from DePauw University and a M.A. in Counseling from Michigan State University . His seminal essay, ” Sweet Tea Ethics: Black Luv, Healthcare, and Cultural Mistrust,” currently appears in Not In My Family: AIDS in the African American Community, a 2007 NAACP Image Award nominated collection edited by Gil Robertson. (www.afrostoshelltoes.com).

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