When every day we see them lost
By Legal Lynching
Easy targets for “Law enforcement”
And the press to Stigmatize and Demonize
Because of our color

Why? I wonder
Must we relive America’s bloody history
Of Slavery, Black Codes and Jim Crow
With daily accounts of Legal Lynching
In this New Century
Why do Black deaths matter?

Here is the link to the website of Richard A. James, who composed and performed the music for the CD “Jazz Heaven”, a collection of Jazz poetry by Tomas Gayton. For MP3 samples and a link to order the CD, please visit his website at www.richardjames.com

The Saga of Lewis G. Clarke, Born a “White” Slave
I highly recommend you read Carver Clark Gayton’s remarkable biography of his maternal great grandfather, an African American hero and fugitive slave who with Frederick Douglass was a leader in the Abolitionist struggle to end slavery.
After interviewing Lewis, Harriet Beecher Stowe described Lewis G. Clarke as the prototype for the character George Harris in her popular novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, published in 1852.
Lewis’ life dramatically personifies the tragic results of the One Drop Rule of white America. But “The evil produced a good. African Americans can look very different from each other but bond together…The one-drop rule united a group of people to fight the residual effects of slavery, i.e., segregation, racism, and injustice. Indeed Lewis Clarke celebrated his black heritage.”


Sitting in Rebecca’s Café sipping chai
And savoring her vegan soup
While on the stage guys & gals
Are strumming guitars & singing solos
On the open mike
Next to the stage is a huge painting
Of a black man’s face
Etched with deep lines & wrinkles
Whose smiling eyes defy the master’s lash
The sharecropper’s shack
The urban ghetto
Living on the street
And fill my Heart with Hope

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