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A Scribe Called Quess? (Michael Moore).
“The River Poem.”

Michael “Quess?” Moore © 2009.
Used by permission.
All rights reserved.

I’m traversing road upon the New Orleans Bayou

somewhere among the Lagniappe of Boudreaux’s Boondocks

… Anger…

carving its curvature into the latent recesses of my cranium
a searing signature that emblazons itself
in red
atop the murky crimson undertow
of haunted passions that flow
in a riverbed of boiling blood
beneath bronze flesh


the progeny of fear
I wonder what propels me more
…what leads me here?

as I peruse these alien highways
of the American South
where once upon a thyme
men and women of my hue
presumably tilled these now waylaid wetlands
to the tune of backlashes
from hovering overseers
these alien swamplands

…what of them?

what of the menstrual flow of beautiful women
whose painfully necessary hygienic underpinnings
are neatly carted off into sterile safe boxes?

what of “security” and federated emergency management
logistically funneled through American highways
designated for tanks and military contraband?

what of the highways belied by byways
garnished in bristling wood and leaf
that protrudes knifingly thru the placid face of wind swept swamp waters?

god’s little bushels of thought

they are truncated tree stumps
sketchy vestiges of horticultural imaginings
only half sprung
weather beaten to an autumnal brown
scattered menacingly atop the calm
face of the metallic silver swamp water

like roaches in project hallways!

an ancient reminder of life
sprung haplessly from water
a cosmic harbinger of the infinite pattern
— existential ejaculation
sprung forth
from a well of darkness
whose depths remain unknown

it is this well
this amorphous untouchable
this malleable ethereal vagabond
whose frequency finds form and flesh
in wandering wetlands

subatomic amoeba
drifting Piscean thought
trumpet wails from Byrd

~ascending harp chords from Alice Coltrane in devotion to the goddess~

that we package in plastic veneer
concealing the violence of its innards
that we imprison in bar codes
and ship off to the highest bidder

cosmic consciousness encaged in the cacophony of commerce

her beauty minced in make up
in preparation for the murder circus that is market

her waters sealed in softness
a soil now sullied and soured by time

pinned down in cobblestone
…conquered by concrete…

baby I wanna taste you
engulf my face in you
swim in you
naked and raw
girl I’ll drink yo’ swamp water
till you wiggle those leafy toes in that cool
Mississippi River Breeze

you give me chills
to the tune of primordial thrills
that ripple and spill across my flesh all legion like
goose bumping to a syncopated timeless rhythm that proves I’m ILL!

for far too long
the purity of your “disease”
has been siphoned off into safe ways

reviled and vilified
publicly victimized
lucidity lynched

your waters vanquished to vapor
amidst the violence of vaginal probe
you have been

bombed for peace
killed for prosperity
smothered in compliments
suffocated in false flattery
praised for manipulation
exalted only for control

and now here you lay

on the banks of the Mississippi
placid and virginal
waylaid and world weary
unexpectant but prepared

for the next disaster, search and seizure

we have smothered you in concrete
but your children sing from the rocks
ancestors whisper through wind chimes
adorned in dormancy to the naked eye
you dance a seductive hula to a violent verve of bossa nova
emanating from the cusp of sensory crevice

and here I sit
in the Bayou Boondocks
Saintly patience persistent as John
Henry-esque in my belligerent perch
atop the stolid form of
anger’s stubborn mountain

I hearken unto thee
till rocks give way
to soil I till
that leads me back
to you

Text prepared by:


Quess?, A Scribe Called. (Michael “Quess?” Moore). “The River Poem.” Michael “Quess?” Moore © 2009. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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