A closed window looks down on a dirty courtyard, and black people call across or scream across or walk across defying physics in the stream of their will.
Our world is full of sound. Our world is more lovely than anyone’s tho we suffer, and kill each other and sometimes fail to walk the air.
We are beautiful people with African imaginations full of mask and dances and swelling chants with African eyes and noses and arms though we sprawl in gray chains in a place full of winters, when what we want is sun.
We have been captured, brothers. And we labor to make our getaway, into the ancient image, into a new correspondence with ourselves and our black family.
We need magic now we need the spells, to raise up return, destroy, and create. What will be the sacred words????
Ka ‘Ba is reprinted from New Black Voices (New York: New American Library, 1972) by permission of the author George Barlow.