Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Benefit for Black Bird Press

The African American Library/Museum

Black Bird Press
Academy of Da Corner

Read in/teach in
Book Party


Dear Friend,

On Saturday, May 15, 2 pm, we will celebrate the release of my latest book The Wisdom of Plato Negro, Parables/Fables by Marvin X.

I am requesting your presence at this event that is also a benefit for Black Bird Press. Most of my twenty books are out of print, plus new titles await publication. Actually, funds are needed for a proper run of The Wisdom of Plato Negro. A limited edition costs nearly twenty dollars per book to print. So funds are urgently needed.

As one of the founders of the Black Arts Movement, we are attempting to advance the cultural revolution. Black Bird Press is my contribution, but I need your support at this time.

The Wisdom of Plato Negro is priced at $100.00 to benefit the BBP book projects.

As many of you know, over the past three or four years, we have given away copies of my books at 14th and Broadway, downtown Oakland (retail value $20,000.00). But this is an investment in educating and saving our people, adults and youth.

I was so happy to hear youth tell me recently that reading one of my books changed their lives. A young sister said my book empowered her, she didn’t know she had that much power. Mothers and fathers have purchased my books for their at-risk sons and daughters. Even senior brothers tell me they learn something from my books. So I’m convinced I’m on the right path.

Your support is needed. If you can’t attend the benefit celebration at the African American Library/Museum on Saturday, May 15, 2 p.m., 14th and Martin Luther King, Jr., downtown Oakland, please send a generous donation of any amount to Black Bird Press, 1222 Dwight Way, Berkeley CA 94702. With a donation of one hundred dollars or more, you will receive a autographed copy of The Wisdom of Plato Negro.

To celebrate the publication of The Wisdom of Plato Negro, Parables/Fables, I am asking poets, writers and community people to join in reading from the parables/fables. The following are especially invited to read:

Ishmael Reed
Cecil Brown
devorah major
Ayodele Nzingha (confirmed)
Linda Johnson
Phavia Khujichagulia
Paradise (confirmed)
Art Sheridan
Aubrey LaBrie
Duke Williams
Rev. George Murray
Charile Walker (confimed)
Will Ussery
Al Young
Grier (confirmed)
Ptah Allah El (confirmed)
Ramal Lamar (confirmed)
Suzzette Celeste(confirmed)
James W. Sweeney(confirmed)
Abdul Sabry
Nathan Hare
Marcel Diallo,
Dr. Julia Hare
Danny Glover
Jimmy Garrett
Rehemah Bah
Michael Lange
Jerri Lange
Benny Stewart
Opal Palmer Adisa
Donald Lacy
Greg Bridges
Davey D
Chinaka Hodge
Ise Lyfe
Marc Barmuthi Joseph
Fritz Pointer

Naru Kwina
Amir Sulaiman
Wanda Sabir (confirmed)
Lee Hubbard
Adam Turner
Dr. Oba T'shaka
Timothy Simon
Kweli Tutashinda
Latifa Simon
Lige Dailey
J. Vern Cromartie (confirmed)
Clifton (confirmed)
Ken Johnson (confirmed)
Gregory Fields (confirmed)
Timothy Reed (confirmed)
Michelle LaChaux (confirmed)
James Moore (confirmed).

For my reading/performance, I will be accompanied by singer Rashidah Sabreen. If you missed us on KPFA this past Monday, please go to the archives


Marvin X, Publisher, editor, author

Black Bird Press

1222 Dwight Way, Berkeley CA 94702
Book Release Party for Marvin X

Saturday, May 15, 2pm
There will be a reading and book signing for Marvin X's
The Wisdom of Plato Negro, Parables/Fables

African American Library/Museum,
14th and Martin Luther King, Jr.,
Downtown Oakland

For more information contact Veda Silva, Museum Project Coordinator, 510-637-0199.

Book price $100.00
309 pages

If you can't make the party, the book is available from:
Black Bird Press
1222 Dwight Way,
Berkeley CA 94702

Please support one of the founders of the Black Arts Movement. Advance the cultural revolution!

Quite extraordinary! Who else in America publishes two and three books a year? Who else within the Black Community engages our folks daily to liberate themselves in real and cyberspace?
Congratulations! on your
wondrous achievements.
--Rudolph Lewis, founding editor, Chickenbones, A Journal

Now Available from Black Bird Press

The Wisdom of Plato Negro

Marvin X

“Is Marvin X a parable or fable? We doubt a Marvin X exists! We double doubt there is a Plato Negro!”

—Amiri Baraka

"He's the USA's Rumi!"
--Bob Holman

"Jeremiah, I presume! I am sure these parables are a first in America exploiting this literary category. People will wonder where to place these parables and fables. You have expanded contemporary literature. I suspect there is nothing like them in post-modern American literature."
Lewis, Founding Editor

ChickenBones: A Journal

"If you want to learn about motivation and inspiration, don't spend all that money going to workshops and seminars, just go stand at 14th and Broadway, downtown Oakland and watch Marvin X at work. He's Plato teaching on the streets of Oakland."
--Ishmael Reed

The works of “Plato Negro” prove to be a major contribution to the field of African Philosophy. These works provide a model for a standard approach toward reflective thinking and critical analysis for African people, still trying to define their own philosophical worldview.

What Plato’s works did to inspire classical Greece and the European generations to follow, we hope this brilliant piece of literature from “Plato Negro” will shed light on Africans today and future generations to come. Write on “Plato Negro”.

--Ptahotep A. El (Trace 101)
Minister of Education, Academy of Da Corner

Mail order only
The truth is priceless, freedom is not free.

Suggested donation: $100.00 (one hundred dollars)

What is the value of truth? The actual value of a hamburger
is $200.00 when factored in the slave labor of tomato, lettuce and cucumber field workers, also the health problems of workers subjected to fields sprayed with pesticides and fertilizers. Also hormone grown beef affects the health of consumers.

Black Bird Press
1222 Dwight Way, Berkeley CA 94702

Introduction by Ptah Allah El

Preface: A Dialogue—Ishmael Reed, Dr. Nathan Hare, Dr. Rodney D. Coates


Parables and Fables

Parable of Love 1

Fable of the Donkey 6

Fable of the Elephant 7

Parable of the Heart 9

Parable of the Black Brotherhood 11

Parable of King Tut 13

Parable of the Sacred 16

Parable of the Poor Righteous Teacher 19

Parable of the Parrot 21

Parable of a Happy Dope Fiend 23

Parable of the Man who loved his Mama 24

Parable of the Madpoet 28

Parable of the Witchdoctor 31

Parable of the Preacher’s Wife 37

Parable of the Rabbit 40

Parable of the Black Bourgeoisie 43

Parable of Iraq 46

Parable of the War that is not War 50

Parable of the Colored People 52

Parable of the Man Who Left the Mountain 55

Parable of the Girl Ignut of Men 60

Parable of the A Students 63

Parable of the Good Children 66

Parable of Man, Beasts, Ancestors, Nature 68

Parable of the Drunk Man 70

Parable of the Hustler 73

Parable of the Woman at the Well 76

Parable of the Gambler 78

Parable of Letting Go 79

Parable on Death of Dreams 80

Parable of the Bar 83

Parable of the Table 84

Parable of the Bitter Bitch 86

A Dialogue on Bitch 88

Parable of the Weather 94

Parable of the City of God 95

Parable of the Sick Soul 96

Parable of the Criminal Society 99

Parable of Monks and Ministers 102

Parable of the Dirty South 103

Parable of the No People 105
Fable of the Black Bird 106
Parable of the Real Woman 108
Parable of the Cell Phone 110
Parable of the Man With the Gun in Hand 114
Parable of the Gangsta 116
Fable of the Rooster and the Hen 118
Parable of the Pit Bull 120
Parable of Black Man and Block Man 122
Fable of the Sleeping Lion 124
Parable of the Baby Carriage 125
Parable of the Woman in the Box 127
Parable of the Fire 129
Parable of the Basket 131
Parable of the Man Who Wanted to Die 133

Parable of Snow in Oakland 135

Parable of Neo-colonialism at University of California, Berkeley 137

Parable of What Right? 142

Parable of the Cross and the Lynching Tree 144

Parable of Who Killed Chauncey Bailey 147

Parable of the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea 149

A Platonic Negro Dialogue on the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea 153

Parable of the Return of Gov. Moonbeam 167

Parable of the Oakland Police Gang 170

Parable of the Family 172

Parable of the North American African as Haitian 176

Parable of Same Sex Marriage, Straight Men, Prostitution 180

Parable of Zionism and National Insanity 182

Parable of Obama Drama 186

Parable of the Green Revolution 190

Parable of Gang Violence and Political Power 192

Parable of who asks the Negro? 196

Parable of broken systems, broken minds 199

Parable of Cornel West as angry black man 203

Parable of the Sub-prime Negro 204

Parable of the Man Who Talked with Cows 206

Parable of A Day in the Life of Plato Negro 207

A Dialogue on White Supremacy 212

Parable of the Grand Denial 217

Parable of Imagination 221

Parable of Dope, Mamas and Preachers 231

Parable of the Fall of America 234

Parable of Evil in the World 235

Parable of American Gangsta J. Edgar Hoover 238

Parable of Sobriety 242

Parable of Michael Jackson 246

Parable of Suicide 248

Parable of Message to the White Man 250

Parable of the Ash Cloud 258

Parable of One Million School Dropouts 260

Parable of Tiger Woods and the Mythology of Dick 264

Parable of the Dick Slave 266

Parable of Toxic Love 268

Parable of Rape 270

Parable of the Dick and Gun 274

Parable of the Mythology of Dick and Pussy 275

Parable of Gay and Lesbian Youth 293

Parable of Creativity and Sexuality 300

Parable of the Old Lovers 303

Parable of Desirelessness 306

Support one of the founders of the Black Arts Movement
Advance the Cultural Revolution

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