Thursday, April 15, 2010

Parable of the Old Lovers

Parable of the Old Lovers

They met in their twenties. She celebrated her 21st birthday with him, making mad love in his room on Page Street in San Francisco. It was the 60s, around the time of that great Summer of Love. Haight Street was full of hippies in love. These lovers were among them, black hippies. Smoking weed. Dropping LSD. Spreading black nationalism. Studying Islam. Black Arts West Theatre. Black Panthers. Black Student Union. Huey, Bobby, Eldridge, Kathleen, Angela. Malcolm. Elijah. Martin. Jose Goncalves. Ed Bullins. Black House. Baraka. Sonia. Askia. Amina. Avotcja. Sarah Fabio. Journal of Black Poetry. Black Dialogue. Soulbook. Black World. Muhammad Speaks. Black Theatre.

Young and dumb lovers. Angry. Confused. She still loved a brother back East. Nude bathing in Fresno, 112 degrees before noon. She wanted to go to her other lover, so she did. He went to Canada, refused to fight in Vietnam. No Viet Cong called him a nigguh. She married her East coast lover. Then came to Canada for adultery. Stayed a minute in the snow, then went home to Chicago. She wrote him a love letter and he slipped down to Chicago underground. Met Chicago crew. Don L. Lee. Hoyt. Gwen. Carolyn Rogers. Jewell Lattimore. Martin killed. She went back to her husband. He went to Harlem. New Lafayette Theatre. Ed Bullins. Askia. Sonia. Nikki. Sun Ra. Bob Macbeth. Milford Graves. Farrakhan.

His lover was in Philly with her husband. She came to Harlem for adultery. A little wine. A little weed.

She left her husband. Her lover came to Philly to hang out. On a trip to Montreal to see his other lover, he got busted for draft evasion. Went back to California to stand trial. He taught at Fresno State University until Gov. Reagan threw him out. He married a student, fled to Mexico. His lover wrote him but he was married and did not reply. He was captured in Belize, deported back to the US, returned to San Francisco to stand trial. His wife visited him. His lover visited. She brought him Muhammad Speaks. The black sheriff slipped them in his cell.

He spent five months in prison, came home to see his first baby daughter. The reactionaries killed his comrade in Fresno. He fled to San Francisco. His lover awaited him. She became part of his theatre. She was in fashion school. She made him a beautiful black velvet shit with gold trimming. He taught at the University, met another student, married her. Busy man. Lousy lover. His wives and lover did not get along, did not like each other, sometimes fought.

His lover went back East. His marriages fell apart. He told his lover to come back. He promised to marry her, but changed his mind when she got there. Still they were lovers. She had other lovers, he did too.

She wanted land and children. She adopted five and went South, bought land. Raised her children. Raised animals she loved. Cows. Goats. Chickens. Geese. Ducks. Turkeys. Doves.
She was in her heaven, Gullah heaven.

He came to visit, do some writing. They were old lovers now. Her children were grown and gone. She threw them out since they were ungrateful.

The old lovers loved. If only a flicker, their love was still alive, even though she denied their love. But she loved his determination. He loved how she made her dreams reality. If nothing else, they respected each other. He was at work on the computer when she came into the room. She said, "Do you mind if I masturbate while you type your poem?" He was shocked at her subtle boldness. He almost fell back from the computer. He got up and came to her. He never finished his poem.
--Marvin X

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