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Bend to it by Kevin Simmonds

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Soon I will be done

Simmonds, Kevin

Negro spiritual

I go down where itís still sung
by the mother of the block
lifting her tremulous contralto
from the screened porch that leans
such that the latch wonít lock

Iíve grown mean without its milk
that saved masters from their slaves
salve rubbed into the pink tears
where rot shouldíve set in
the revolt

Ask some black kid if they know it 
& they might say the title
rings a bell but that doesnít matter
it runs mad in the ruby fractals
of their capillaries & in their spit

Never mind the tempo, child
the stride began with Soon
from your upbeat
of breath & the ancestors
already galloping


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