Here’s a poem by Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones) Beatnik fellow-traveler, co-founder of the Black Arts Movement, and all around cultural provocateur. I borrowed the phrase “no money in a money world” from him during lecture yesterday.
A New Reality Is Better Than a New Movie!
BY AMIRI BARAKA
How will it go, crumbling earthquake, towering inferno, juggernaut, volcano,
in reality, other than the feverish nearreal fantasy of the capitalist flunky film hacks
tho they sense its reality breathing a quake inferno scar on their throat even snorts of
100% pure cocaine cant cancel the cold cut of impending death to this society. On all
screens of america, the joint blows up every hour and a half for two dollars an fifty
They have taken the niggers out to lunch, for a minute, made us partners nigger Charlie) or
surrogates (boss nigger) for their horror. But just as superafrikan mobutu cannot
way out of responsibility for lumumba’s death, nor even with his incredible billions
cannot even save his pale ho’s titties in the crushing weight of
things as they really are.
How will it go, does it reach you, getting up, sitting on the side
of the bed, getting ready to go to work. Hypnotized by the ma-
chine, and the cement floor, the jungle treachery of
to survive with no money in a money world, of making the boss
100,000 for every 200
you get, and then having his brother get you for the rent, and if
you want to buy the car
helped build, your downpayment paid for it, the rest goes to buy
his old lady a foam
rhinestone set of boobies for special occasions when kissinger
drunkenly fumbles with her blouse, forgetting himself.
If you don’t like it, what you gonna do about it. That was the
question we asked each
still right regularly need to ask. You don’t like it? Whatcha
gonna do, about it??
The real terror of nature is humanity enraged, the true
technicolor spectacle that
cant record. They cant even show you how you look when you
go to work, or when you
They cant even show you thinking or demanding the new so-
cialist reality, its the ultimate
wave. When all over the planet, men and women, with heat in
their hands, demand that
be planned to include the lives and self determination of all the
people ever to live. That is the scalding scenario with a cast of
just under two billion that they dare not even whisper. Its called,
“We Want It All . . . The Whole World!”
Amiri Baraka, “A New Reality Is Better Than a New Movie!” from Transbluesency: The Selected Poems of Amiri Baraka/LeRoi Jones, 1961-1995 (New York: Marsilio