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Poetry and Music


Escaping the Prism – Fade into Black, by Jalil Muntaqim: Book Review by Phyllis Taub Greenleaf

This book is a powerful tapestry of Scholarship, Activism and Poetry. The Personal with the Political gives this book balance and magnetism!

During the time when key leaders of the Black Panther Party were assassinated by FBI operatives while asleep in their beds, Jalil Muntaqim, a new member of the BPP, was arrested just before his 20th birthday.

Incarcerated in California and New York for the past 47 years, Muntaqim’s essays and poetry in ESCAPING THE PRISM are a living testimony to one man’s creativity, resilience and commitment to justice for himself, and all political prisoners in our “so called” ...........READ MORE


ANCESTORS ROLL CALL! What Did They Think? (poem by Jalil Muntaqim)


What did they think?

Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Akai
Gurley, Trayvon Martin, Michael
Brown, life precious blood spelled
in the mud FREEDOM …

When will it come?

What did they think?

Eric Garner, Oscar Grant, Sean
Bell, Amadou Diallo whose life
breath echoed the dreams deferred
from Afrikan ancestors through
the middle passage, to Denmark
Vesey and Nat Turner, do you
hear it, are you listening?

Micah heard the torturous
mourning echoing over
the ages forcing us to
remember Shaka Zulu, Queen
Nzinga, the Mau Mau to Steve
Biko and Nelson Mandela.

What did they think?

Marcus Garvey, Malcolm ...........READ MORE

Poison Girls

Poison Girls preforming at the squatted Zig Zag Club
in London, December 1982 (photo: G. Burnett)

The Poison Girls were a British anarcho-punk band, at one point a part of that scene around Crass. The female singer, Vi Subversa, wrote songs that kicked patriarchy in the teeth, bringing the kind of punk energy associated with “anarcho-punk” to bear on women’s experiences and struggles. From what i understand, Vi got turned on to punk when two of her kids formed their own band (The Fatal Microbes – they went on to be half of Rubella Ballet) – she figured this was ...........READ MORE

Kuwasi Balagoon

Kuwasi Balagoon: Your Honor

your honor
since i’ve been convicted of murder
and have taken time to digest
just what that means
after noting what it means to my family
and how it affects people who read the newspapers
and all
i see now that i’ve made a terrible mistake!
and didn’t approach this trial
in a respectful, deliberate or thoughtful manner
didn’t take advantage of the best legal advice
and based my actions on irrelevant matters
which i can see now in a much more sober mind
had nothing to do with this case
i must have been legally insane thinking about:
the ...........READ MORE


A Moment of Silence by Emmanuel Ortiz

Before I begin this poem, I’d like to ask you to join me in a moment of silence in honor of those who died in the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11th, 2001. I would also like to ask you to offer up a moment of silence for all of those who have been harassed, imprisoned, disappeared, tortured, raped, or killed in retaliation for those strikes, for the victims in Afghanistan, Iraq, in the U.S., and throughout the world.

And if I could just add one more thing…

A full day of silence… for the tens of ...........READ MORE