Friday, September 17, 2010

Fly to Allah

Fly to Allah, 1968, established Marvin X as one of the key poets of the Black Arts Movement and the father of Muslim American literature. See Dr. Mohja Kahf on Muslim American literature.

In the September, 1969, Negro Digest/Black World magazine, Chicago poet Johari Amimi reviewed Fly to Allah: Fly to Allah by Marvin X, is more than poetry--it is singing/song, it is meditation, it is spirit/flowing/flying, it is blackness celebrated, it is prophecy, it is life, is all of these things and more, beyond articulation. Brother Marvin X is flying us/our/selves to Allah.
And his strength is not merely aesthetic

who killed uncle tom
who killed uncle sam
Fly to Him
If you are from Him

Do not beat your woman
Love her!
She will leave you
If you beat her
She will leave you
If you do not beat her
Guard against her
she is weak
by nature
Protect her
Elevate her
Fly with her to Allah
You will be successful
You will dance forever
in the here/after
on earth
behind drummers
who never stop....

but in the many positives we blkpeople need in order to be to build ourselves (which precludes building a nation). Things we really need

For the moon submits
to the morning sun
where are you
in the circle of time
dry your eyes
sweet woman
let me rock your soul
with my Father's hands
I will not be here long.

...We are gods
black and beautiful we are
sailing through space/time
to a higher place
mountains/cities fall
as we march
into another world
much blacker than this....

There is more beauty here than should be spoken of in a review. Fly to Allah should be read & read & read & meditated upon & reread & reread &.... Thank you, Brother Marvin, for your gift to blkpeople....

...Farewell Harlem
Mecca of the west
Though saddened
I am moved
I smile within
I see my children
and I am a child
rising/taking control
and I am moved
to be here
a star
in Allah's heaven
Wa rah-matu-llahi
Wa barakatuh.
--Johari Amini (Jewel C. Latimore)
Negro Digest, September, 1969

During 1968-69, Marvin X lived underground in Harlem, resisting the Vietnam war. He worked at the New Lafayette Theatre in Harlem, serving as associate editor of Black Theatre magazine. His Harlem associates included Amiri Baraka, Larry Neal, Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Giovanni, Don L. Lee, Sun Ra, Askia Toure, Milford Graves, Mae Jackson, Barbara Ann Teer. Ed Bullins was his host, along with the NLT family. He was also associated with Minister Farakhan and Akbar Muhammad at Mosque #7.

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