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Sixteen Year Old Girl Confronts Marvin X on Black History


 
 

Monday, February 7, 2011




16 Year Old Girl Confronts Marvin X on Black History

photo by
Francisco Barradas



Marvin X was recently confronted by a 16 year old female at his Academy of da Corner, 14th and Broadway, downtown Oakland.

    
The poet is known to be abrasive and often practices theatre of assault on those who pass through the crossroads. Like Legba, you may be in trouble crossing Marvin's path. He is eternally helpful, but has been known to be "the sledgehammer" (Kalamu ya Salaam) in his approach.

Dr. Julia Hare says his pen is filled with venom. "If there was ink in his pen one could recover, but there is no recovery from a pen filled with venom."

Essentially his approach is provocative, something he learned from hustling on the streets of New York. "To get a person's attention on the streets of New York you gotta say something raw that will stop them in their tracks. When I used to sell my anti-domestic violence poem on the street in New York, I would ask the people, 'Do you beat your wife?' Surprisingly, after getting their attention, several replied, 'Yes, I beat my wife and she likes it!' Or, 'No, I don't beat my wife, she beats me!"

The other day a young lady came to him at his peripatetic Academy and said she had passed him one day and he said something negative to her about her knowledge of black history, trying to get her to take a leaflet. So she came back to let him know that she was not ignorant of black history because her parents had taught her.

Marvin X, aka Plato Negro teaching on the streets of Oakland (Ishmael Reed designation), was taken aback by her boldness, up in his face, although people are known to give him a piece of their mind, several have threatened to kill him because of his mouth or acidic personality.

He listened to the young lady and was honored to hear she had knowledge of black history. This had happened to him one time before in Philly when he was selling his poster poems on the street. To get the attention of the Philadelphia Negro (W.E.B. DuBois) , he would say, What were you doing, July 4th, 1776, were you in the celebration or on the plantation?" Actually, he was quoting his poster poem about July 4, 1776. A lady came by with her son and hearing the question, her son replied, "We were on the plantation!" The mother told Marvin who stood in shock that her son knew the answer, "We from the South, so we know our black history!"

The Oakland young female told him she had read his now classic pamphlet Mythology of Pussy. She read it with her mother. He asked her what she thought about it? First she said her mother agreed with some parts and some parts she didn't. As for herself, she wished she had read it when she was eight years old instead of sixteen. Marvin told her that he and his friends wished they'd had such a pamphlet to read when they were sixteen because it would have taught them to have a different attitude toward women and themselves, especially with respect to sexuality.

But eight years old? Actually, a mother had come by the Academy a few weeks ago and suggested he write a pamphlet for eight year old girls. Apparently they are having sex, though the mother only said, "Write the pamphlet!"

In truth, the poet was on the phone with a friend who has a child care center. The friend received a call from his wife who runs the center. He said he had to get off the phone to go to a parent conference because two five year old girls were caught having sex with each other.

Another time the friend cut the phone conversation short to go attend another parent conference because a two year old boy was trying to have sex with all the girls at the child care center. And when his Pamper was changed his penis stood straight up and he just smiled!

Plato Negro apologized to the 16 year old for having said anything that offended her. He gave her a leaflet and invited her to attend the poetry festival and book fair on February 19th, Noon til 6pm at the Joyce Gordon Gallery, 406 14th Street, Oakland. We hope you will attend and please bring your children. One purpose of the festival/book fair is to have the community purchase books from local authors for donation to juvenile hall, Santa Rita County Jail and local prisons.

Many of our youth, especially young men, don't read until incarcerated. Some of the men we are studying and honoring this black history did not read until imprisoned: Malcolm X, Eldridge Cleaver, George Jackson, Tookie Williams. Crack a book before you are booked for Crack, says Post Newspaper Group Publisher, Paul Cobb. Author Ptah says, Hug A Thug before the thug hugs you! Ptah will autograph his latest book at the festival/book fair.
--Marvin X
2/7/11



Black History is World History

BEFORE THE EARTH WAS
I WAS
BEFORE TIME WAS
I WAS
YOU FOUND ME NOT LONG AGO
AND CALLED ME LUCY
I WAS FOUR MILLION YEARS OLD
I HAD MY TOOLS BESIDE ME
I AM THE FIRST MAN
CALL ME ADAM
I WALKED THE NILE FROM CONGO TO DELTA
A 4,000 MILE JOG
BLACK HISTORY IS WORLD HISTORY


I LIVED IN THE LAND OF CANAAN
BEFORE ABRAHAM,BEFORE HEBREW WAS BORN
I AM CANAAN, SON OF HAM
I LAUGH AT ARABS AND JEWS
FIGHTING OVER MY LAND
I LIVED IN SABA, SOUTHERN ARABIA
I PLAYED IN THE RED SEA
DWELLED ON THE PERSIAN GULF

I LEFT MY MARK FROM BABYLON TO TIMBUKTU
WHEN BABYLON ACTED A FOOL, THAT WAS ME
I WAS THE FOOL
WHEN BABYLON FELL, THAT WAS ME
I FELL
BLACK HISTORY IS WORLD HISTORY

I WAS THE FIRST EUROPEAN
CALL ME NEGRITO OR GRIMALDI
I WALKED ALONG THE MEDITERRANEAN
FROM SPAIN TO GREECE
OH GREECE!
WHY DID YOU KILL SOCRATES?
WHY DID YOU GIVE HIM THE POISON HEMLOCK?
WHO WERE THE ALIEN GODS HE INTRODUCED
CORRUPTING THE YOUTH OF ATHENS?

THEY WERE MY GODS, BLACK GODS FROM AFRICA
OH, SOCRATES, PLATO AND ARISTOTLE
WHOSE PHILOSOPHY DID YOU TEACH
THAT WAS GREEK TO THE GREEKS?
PYTHAGORAS,WHERE DID YOU LEARN GEOMETRY?
DEMOCRITUS, WHERE DID YOU STUDY ASTRONOMY?
SOLON AND LYCURGUS, WHERE DID YOU STUDY LAW?
IN EGYPT, AND EGYPT IS AFRICA
AND AFRICA IS ME

I AM THE BURNT FACE, THE BLAMELESS ETHIOPIAN
HOMER TOLD YOU ABOUT IN THE ILIAD
HOMER TOLD YOU ABOUT ULYSSES, TOO,
A STORY HE GOT FROM ME.
BLACK HISTORY IS WORLD HISTORY

I AM THE FIRST CHINESE
CHINA HAS MY EYES
I AM THE ABORIGINAL ASIAN
LOOK FOR ME IN VIETNAM,CAMBODIA AND THAILAND
I AN THERE, EVEN TODAY, BLACK AND BEAUTIFUL
BLACK HISTORY IS WORLD HISTORY

I USED TO TRAVEL TO AMERICA
LONG BEFORE COLUMBUS
CAME TO ME ASKING FOR DIRECTIONS
AMERIGO VESPUCCI
ON HIS VOYAGE TO AMERICA
SAW ME IN THE ATLANTIC
RETURNING TO AFRICA

AMERICA WAS MY HOME
BEFORE AZTEC, MAYA, TOLTEC, INCA AND OLMEC
I WAS HERE
I CAME TO PERU 20,OOO YEARS AGO
I FOUNDED MEXICO CITY
SEE MY PYRAMIDS, SEE MY CABEZA COLOSAL
IN VERA CRUZ AND YUCATAN
THAT'S ME
I AM THE MEXICAN
FOR I AM MIXED WITH ALL MEN
AND ALL MEN ARE MIXED WITH ME

I AM THE MOST JUST OF MEN
I AM THE MOST PEACEFUL
WHO LOVES PEACE DAY AND NIGHT

SOMETIMES I LET TYRANTS DEVOUR ME
SOMETIMES PEOPLE FALSELY ACCUSE ME
SOMETIMES PEOPLE CRUCIFY ME
BUT I AM EVER RETURNING
I AM ETERNAL, I AM UNIVERSAL
AFRICA IS MY HOME
ASIA IS MY HOME
AMERICAS IS MY HOME
BLACK HISTORY IS WORLD HISTORY.
--Marvin X
1981

Black History: Four black male youth reading at Academy of da Corner, 14th and Broadway,
Oakland. Photo Gene Hazzard, Oakland Post Newspaper










Marvin X will be at the Bay Area Black Authors and Post Newspaper Group Poetry Festival and Book Fair, Saturday, February 19, Noon til 6pm at the Joyce Gordon Gallery, 406 14th Street, downtown Oakland. Call 510-837-5107. Email jmarvinx@yahoo.com
www.blackbirdpressnews.blogspot.com

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