Ho Down Blues

God, I'm tired.
Wanna go dive down deep 'neath the bayou so ain't nobody can find me there- 

so deep it'd take a spirit light to guide to just where this treasure hides- settled in 'mongst gators an' water moccasins listnin' to the ghosts of long-past and once-has-been slippin' on away from us, listnin' to old myths and legends slippin' out of our oil- and Mississippi mud-encrusted fingers left aged and depleted by our fathers' sins and our mothers who rarely challenged 'em.

Ya Rabbi, I don't know what you're trying to teach me.

My head's too thick, my blood too thinned with Tabasco and likker poured out over old wounds; all I can see is forests and cypress trees and so many who came before on their knees-

and why is that?

Why is it some people only live to suffer and die interminably?

That some are born to weal and others to woe and never to concretely change the status quo?

Why is it some enjoy taking and making suffer all "Others," and that these are the ones we have come to honor?

Ya Allah, I'm so tired.

Take me down South to the bayou. Bury me deep in toxic brackish waters to swim among alligators and forgotten Blues tromboners. Bury me deep amidst old Blues singers, those African and Indian mammies left to die by those that nursed from their mammaries and turned instead towards power- not empathy, nor family.

Bury me deep in Bayou Lafourche, with Voodoun priestesses long passed hence, to converse on the ravages of all our sins visited upon them who fought back and on those who were helpless. Bury me deep with ancestors unnamed- Vietnamese, Chinese, Houma Nation; Chickasaw, Choctaw, Irish, and Malaysian; Spanish, Berber, Wolof, and Persian; Songhai, Sikh, Lebanese, and German.

The whole world lies beneath these swamps of mine- it's why they're so fertile and polluted at the same time- so just add me to the queue, to the long, sordid, muddy milieu, that forms our ambivalent country's roux.

Dear God, just keep me near;
just let me be
and return to my country
to sleep-

I've no more dreams, only nightmares.

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