TALK TO THE DADDY

Hello. Come on in. The daddy writes about current events, literature, music and, once in a while, drops something on you from back in the day to make you pause and ponder, stop and stare, and begin to wonder. Who knows? You may start to pace the floor, shake your head from side to side, then fall down on bended knees in a praying position and cry, "Lawd, have mercy! What is this world coming to?" Check yourself! But this blog is NOT about the daddy. It's about you: your boos, your fam, your hood, your country...our hopes and dreams of a better tomorrow. So let's make a pact: the daddy will put it on the track if you'll chase it down and hit him back. Together, we can definitely take it to another level. Shall we?"

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Can You Still Hear America Singing?

I Hear America Singing

I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear,
Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be
blithe and strong,
The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam,
The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or
leaves of work,
The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the
deckhand singing on the steamboat deck,
The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter
singing as he stands,
The wood-cutter’s song, the ploughboy’s on his way in the
morning, or at noon intermission or a sundown,
The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife
at work, or of the girl sewing or washing,
Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else,
The day what belongs to the day- at night the party of
young fellows, robust, friendly,
Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.
-- from "Leaves of Grass" by Walt Whitman

In the past few posts, we spoke of poetry as truth, of poets using poetry not only to document reality but to make us feel reality at the core of our being so that, hopefully, we will remember it. We gave examples of such poetry by highlighting the poetry of Sterling A. Brown, Robert Hayden, Gwendolyn Brooks, Margaret Walker and Wanda Coleman.

With this post, the daddy concludes this poetry series, but he will still post on poetry from time to time. Meanwhile, he asks that you drink from the cup of poetry because, in the words of Rumi:

"The cup wants to be lifted and
used, not broken, but carried

carefully to the next. The cup
knows there is a state for you.

Beyond this, one that comes with
more vast awareness...”

The daddy asks that you remember, with feeling, the insightful poems and the great poets who labor long after midnight to fill your cup in the morning, to connect with you at what Rumi calls “the deep root of your being, the presence of your lord” so that you will not be “wasting valuable keenness and forgetting your dignity and purpose.”

And, like Whitman, the daddy is asking, can you still hear America singing?

7 comments:

sdg1844 said...

This has been a wonderful series. I've enjoyed it so much and have learned the names of poets I never knew about.

Thanks much!

Anonymous said...

I agree! Hit us up with some more real soon...y'hear now?

MacDaddy said...

sdg: Thanks for come back to read the entire series...I'm coming to see you at your blog.
anon: I will. I promise.
everyone: Thanks for checking out the series. Blessings.

Nun in the Hood said...

Hi, Mac Daddy...There's one important body of poetry that you've not mentioned....There are 150 psalms that have been chanted for centuries by nuns and monks throughout the world....The composer who put our psalmody to music set aside 4 hours--8:00pm-midnight--to pray over the texts and put them to music for us. It took him 10 years....Come join us sometime and immerse yourself in this poetic treasure! Your readers are welcome, too...Morning, Noon, afternoon and night. Keep the poetry coming....FOOD FOR THE SOUL!

MacDaddy said...

Nuninthehood: Thanks for checking out the poetry series. There's so much poetry from so many religions and so many countries that I didn't include. This was a series that focused primarily on great black poets, some of whom didn't get the credit they deserve or who were basically forgotten because of the subject they chose. But I agree that some religious psalms and passages are poetic and very meaningful. As for the Pslms, they sound interesting. But I'll give it more thought.

Hope you loved the poetry series. Bug I cannot neglect the historic presidential and will be posting about that as well. Keep up the
good work in the hood.

Anonymous said...

I love that you use poetry in your blog. Science, business, sports, and entertainment dominate our culture these days. Have we really made progress as a society when our mediums for beauty and thought, of which poetry if front and central, is now almost tangential to our day-to-day lives, in education and in living?
Thank you for your lessons, as always.
Verna

MacDaddy said...

Verna: I'm trying to find a mixture between political posts and artistic post. Because of the historic nature of the presidential election and the problems with the U.S. economy, I have to talk about politics. But I will definitely continue to speak to the beauty in this world that is manifested in teh great literature and music in this world. So stay with me, and let me know what you think.