Friday, August 29, 2008


Movies and soap operas often tell the story,
However dramatic, suspenseful, thrilling, even sorrowful.
It's all there
Of the life we all live
Of many of our dreams
Bad boy, naughty girl activities,
Closet loves that we just can't bring out
Of our Frankenstein and gentle sides
Of details, some of our glorious past
Or recent nightmares
Successes and disappointments.
For some reason, movies and soap operas reveal it all
As if they were written about us
Our lives, blown up for the world to see
To judge as is if people actually have the right
Because we're all human
No discrimination detected on the color of blood
But all too often that big hit movie
The one that has us on the edge of our seats
Really is just a replay of an actual life
Reality in color, with acting and animation
But real, all too real
Kind of like Sunday's at Church when the pastor, priest if you will
Appears to be looking at you, speaking deeper than just in your ears
Tapping on your heart, your soul, making your palms sweat, your feet itch.
Oh Lord, you're talking to me, of yes, he knows
Even in movies and soap operas, he knows
That's why, for one reason or another, we're often flopped in front of a television or big screen at a particular time
Our anticipations overflowed
Because there is a story, our story, only told by others
Just without our input, that depicts our live
Either we can deal with it or not.
Fact is everyday we live is a story within itself.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


This is darkness
Where people die
Or come thinking they’re going to die
For the inevitable is always evitable
Man, this is the drug-dealing, inhaling, mind-boggling
Projects of …
Well, take your pick of a city
Southeast, D.C., South Central, L.A., Camden, N.J.,
Chester, Pa., oh, listen up
Pop …pop … pop ….
Gun shots, smoke, non-stop disaster
Daylight, certainly during nighttime
A never-ending nightmare
Of gloom and doom
Fear for outsiders, the norm for the everyday dealers
And hookers
All colors included for the white is just as corrupt as the black
And Chinamen and Chinawomen, well they get down and dirty, too
Just as Hispanics who go around speaking mida
Oh Pappy, mommy
Even the humiliating word, cabron
But no matter the talk
Not when there is darkness
Death so close because of a deal
‘Bout to be bad
Maybe, a bag of this, pipe filled with that
Marijuana, cocaine, or mind-altering dust
Yeah, death can come by all means
In the projects, even elsewhere
For the mean streets are all over the Continental USA
Look for them and you will find
What the government knows well of
But ignores, except for campaign seasons
Anytime else
Well, it’s see but don’t see
But we all know
For the darkness is always a reminder
Of how close death could be.


In the end, the final game
Redeem Team did not smash the opponent
But celebrated as if it were the Fourth of July
Or New Year’s Eve
Just without a grand fireworks display
Or balloons and confetti
The sound of trumpets and saxophones
Or drums being ripped rapturously into
Though there were cheers galore and deafening chants of, “USA ..USA …USA”
As it became apparent inside the Wukesong Basketball Arena in China that America
Land of the beautiful, bold and proud
Had reclaimed world bragging rights
The Olympic gold medal in men’s basketball
Doing so with All-Star NBA players
Who hugged and smiled, skipped and raced around as if they were college players after beating Span, 118-107 in the Gold Medal Game
And not multi-millionaires with supposedly bloated egos
Far from it
Because there was Kobe Bryant, reining NBA MVP, jubilant and excited to leave the game
And embrace Carmelo Anthony, then Dwayne Wade
Bear-hug style, the kind NBC announcer and former NBA coach Doug Collins said represents,
“The beauty of sports,”
The thrill of victory for a country that for four years was not No. 1 or No. 2 in men’s basketball in the world
But No. 3, having won the bronze medal in Athen’s in 2004
So it was decided, no more just stepping out on the court with dunk-a-holics and shake and bake artists to try and win against balanced, talented world talent
No more failure
And Redeem Team did not fail
But in the end did not crush Spain and L.A. Lakers center Pau Gasol and his Spaniards, either
Yet, it did not matter
Did not matter because Spain, routed by 37 points to TEAM USA a week earlier
Showed the heart of a college team
Unwilling to bend, foil
But rather bent to go seemingly 15 rounds and more
Hoping to win, pull the big upset
Like Villanova in 1985, which shocked Georgetown and Patrick Ewing to win the NCAA tournament title, 66-64
Like N.C. State in 1983 when Lorenzo Charles was the right man, right time, kind of like Superman
As he slammed home Dereck Whittenburg’s missed desperation heave
N.C. State 54, Houston eventual legends Clyde Drexler and Akeem Olajuwon, 52
But, of course, Redeem Team found a way to hold of mighty Spain
With Kobe proving masterful, unleashing every lethal part of his game in the fourth quarter
Scoring 13 of his 20 points to help turn a two-point advantage into a more comfortable double-digit lead
Back came Spain, Rudy Fernandez dunking, Gasol and his brother Marc both scoring inside
Defense, steals, hustle
High stakes, basketball simply at its best
Back came Kobe and Deron Williams and Dwight Howard and D-Wade
And Kobe again and again
With one goal, one dream in mind
Winning the Olympic gold medal and restoring the USA back to the top of world bragging rights
Mission accomplished
Never mind that it was helter-skelter
Good, intense, tough competition is healthy for the soul
More rewarding in the end
And it showed from the players to Redeem Team coach Mike Krzyzewski
Showed in the way they bonded, handled adversity
Then, celebrated
The gold medal won, America No. 1 again on the hardwood
The dream, mission accomplished by men who proved just how proud they are to be American
Through their determination and loyalty to each other to win at any cost
Or by any margin
Just as long as the gold medal was won
A medal that seemed to carry far more significance
Than a million dollars in the bank
Because they battled for America and glory again
Not personal greed.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


One Olympic Games
A summer of hope, of chase
Of fulfillment and dreams being accomplished
Somehow of cheating does not fit
But there’s host China
A county of nearly 10 million people
Many of them darn good athletes
Like Yao
Wang and Chang, Hue and Sue
The latter four names just to throw out names
But the point of all points is that this is a country that has options
Thousands of options, athletes to choose from
So why cheat?
Why be accused of it
As is the case of the Chinese gymnastics team, winner of six medals
Including the team gold
But was it with the help of He Kexin, who might be only 14 years old
Yes, 14, and ineligible to compete by the Olympic age requirement
Something you’d think the Chinese government would know
And surely does know
Which beings of the question
Why cheat?
When the world is watching, when competition is supposed to be intense and tough
But fair
Above all, fair
With blood and guts, if necessary to achieve glory
So there is no place for cheating
Not even the speculation of cheating
Not with kids or grown adults
Not in these Beijing Games
Or any other Olympic Games
And the hope is that the Chinese government will fess up
Take its slap on the wrist, shame if you will
And do the right thing
Admit guild so that the integrity of the Olympic Games will be maintained.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Obama, Obama
Yes, he will get my vote
Some would say because I’m black and he’s black
But those are narrow-minded people
Blind to reality, essentially stuck in time machines
As in the days of slavery
Suffering, disgusting days when black men slaved the fields
Earning pennies, no gratitude at all
But let’s see, what year is this?
And America has grown to be?
Or has it grown?
The November presidential election will tell all, tell if America has accepted change and is willing to move in a different direction
Unworried about the color of a man’s skin
But rather the brilliance of his mission
The respect of which he’ll return to the Oval Office
Because America under the Republicans control has been a big, bad bully
Why else would we still be in Iraq when our armed forces could be better used trying to clean up ghettos in America
Drugs, violence, senseless killings from coast-to-coast
But we’re overseas, thousands of our American soldiers taking bullets for a cause still relatively unknown
I mean, has the price of gas really gone down?
Hell no
But it’s high as hell
Simply ridiculous for the poor and close to poor
But not for the Bush-alike-rich people
Which is why Obama, Obama must be voted into office
For a change, for better management and the hope is better security
For a different, stronger voice and stature
Not just on a golf course where Tiger Woods rules
Or tennis course where the Williams sisters have ruled
Or basketball arenas where men like Wilt and Magic and Kareem, Dr. J. and Jordan have each graced
But in the white house where global decisions are made
Where never before a black man has worked and lived as head chief
So Obama, Obama
Yes, he’ll get my vote
Doesn’t matter because he’s black and I’m black
But does matter because he represents a change in philosophy
A change in color, power
And hopefully the way America the so-called beautiful is perceived in and out of this country
So vote, yes I will
Vote you should, too
Vote for Barack Obama
For change, for hope, for America to prove that it no longer talks about diversity and the need for change
But actually acts on it.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Speed by water and track
That is the debate
Though both captivate, mind-boggle, even inspire
You know, to be the best that you can be
A world champion, an Olympic champion
Michael Phelps or Usain Bolt
Fast vs. fast
Phelps, the water machine
Bolt, the lightening fast human
Both world-record holders, makers of highlight reels
As well as distinguished gentlemen of different countries
Phelps and his eight gold medals, an American legend
Bolt of Jamaica, the fastest man on earth, winner of the 100 and 200-meter dashes in Beijing
Showmen for sure, two of the best of all-time
Certainly the best of these 2008 Olympics
Time won’t prove otherwise
Whether we win the gold medal in men’s and women’s basketball
Collect boxing golds
Somehow hold off China in the medal count
No, the stories of all stories has been Phelps and Bolt
Speed by water and track
Both great, both unlikely to ever be forgotten
Who’s better?
Debatable, no doubt
But what’s not debatable is that America and the world were treated to thrilling and brilliant performances by both multiple-event champions
Speed by water and track
Speed that seemed to have no end
That left their foes overwhelmed and their countrymen overjoyed
Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt
The top two stars of the 2008 Beijing Games
Men that will never be forgotten.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


It’s right there
A Michael Phelps stroke away
Strongly beckoning
For you
Unnamed warrior, champion in the making
Just do it, get it
Triumph and glory
For achievement, whether on the big stage or not
Warrants celebration
Tension release
Warmth of the heart
So go, go
It’s right there
A Usain Bolt dash away
Strongly beckoning
For you
So long a defeated and cheerless soul
Because of the struggles of life
Because of pain and little gain
But right now it’s there
Just do it, get it
Triumph and glory
No matter the setting, no matter the stage
No matter that it’s just you and your own chase for perfection
Because nobody needs to be around for you to achieve for yourself
So go out and run
Go hit the park and shoot jumpers
Pump that iron
Swim some laps
Hike, bike
Golf, smash a tennis ball
Just remember that glory is not solely based on money earned or medals won
Because you can be a champion in your own mind
And who’s to say you’re not?

Thursday, August 14, 2008


This is a flashback to Hurricane Katrina:

Nobody hears them now
Unfortunately so,
But nobody heard them then
When their screams were loud
Or saw their trickling tears because of fears
Of existence no more
Because of overflow waters and sewage and insanity
And willpower gone, vanished because of souls tarnished
But only if somebody had listened, somebody of authority
Of national command
Of strong morals
Maybe the caskets would not have been so vast
With body after body, thousands in devastating count
As New Orleans, city of once sweet- sounding jazz,
All night dancing and drinking just getting washed away
All the electricity and good food
All the happiness turned into dimness
And all because nobody heard them
Their pleas, prayers for life extension
Because of what they saw, heard in high volume
Because of the speed and power, mercilessness
Oh Katrina, the hurricane that killed dreams, jobs
Far too many lives, good people, unsuspecting, maybe suspecting because of the repeated warnings,
“Get out of town and run and live to talk and eat, maybe, laugh another day,”
But far too many were helpless, not enough money in pocket or bank to escape
Escape the wrath of the mighty, mighty
swift- moving waters
That turned the city of New Orleans into a city
of the swimming dead
Unfortunately, so, so sadly
Because now nobody will ever hear them again.

Note: Poem will be published in my soon-to-be-released "Undaunted," an Ebony Energy Publishing production.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A Coach That Is A Coach

If thou cannot play
Why not coach?
If thou once played
Then why not spread the wealth of knowledge
And coach
Young men and women to be champions
As well as perfect students of the game
And model citizens, most definitely that
But how many coaches really get it in America?
Really want to produce fine young men and women as well as win games?
Uh, let’s see
Coach K at Duke? Yeah, he’s got a clue.
Roy Williams at UNC? Yeah, he’s a players coach, respected and revered around the country
Probably the world ‘cause UNC, wearing that baby blue outfits, has a name
Has long had great coaches, mostly on the hardwood from the great Dean Smith to now Roy
Who battles year after year with Coach K, Tobacco Road Classics
From great players and two A plus coaches, total class acts
Which is what every coach should be
Which is what the legendary Bob Knight was at Indiana
When he was not throwing chairs or choking players
But his players were winners, graduated, became model citizens
So coach Knight, you were Da Man
Never mind your rants and raves, foot stomps and mean looks
And the purpose of all this as you read and read along?
Well, I’m here to grade coaches, those of which the majority may know
Like, oh USC football coach Pete Carroll at USC – simply great, always fields national championship contenders, A-plus
Like, oh college basketball coach John Thompson III at Georgetown – composed, smart, players coach, winner, A-plus
Like, well, say a high school coach you do not know, say Liberty High (Pa.) coach Tim Moncman – former hard-hitting linebacker in high school and college, two-time PIAA state runner-up coach …
Uh, A-minus ‘cause he has yet to win the big one
But he’s a coach who played, who knows his x’s and o’s, how to motivate as well as how to discipline
And, of course, how to spread the wealth of his knowledge
Which is why year-after-year Liberty High in Lehigh Valley, Pa. is a state title contender
Which does not always identify a great coach
But when player after player graduates and goes to college on scholarship
Then, well, there’s a coach doing something right
Which you’d hope all coaches would do
Graduate, educate, elevate.

Monday, August 11, 2008

USA Pride

I watched
My adrenaline and voice rising
My heartbeat pumping faster and faster
Just do it, just do it I kept saying
For pride, for glory, for America the beautiful
Yet also for America, the country of major bullies, starting with Prez Bush
‘Cause we all know day by day the death toll rises in Iraq
The Vietnam-like war which makes no sense, never did, never will
Because thousands of American soldiers have died for a cause that Prez Bush really can’t explain
But Prez Bush for at least today, yesterday, perhaps tomorrow and maybe even the next two weeks
Will be engulfed in the excitement that is the Olympics
That is swimming sensation Michael Phelps
That is D-Wade and LeBron and Kobe
Lisa Leslie and all our other serious hoop-it-up ladies
That is USA track and field and boxing stars
That is our USA volleyball and water polo teams
That is, well, one pride, goal, one mission
One dream
And that dream it to be the best that we can possibly be
On the Olympic, international stage
Without violence playing a role
Just with heart, soul and guts to achieve ultimate glory.