(For Charlie R. Braxton after reading
“Kang Snake Blues: Paradise Lost”)
Anna Mae Vinocasa in a Clarksdale crib, her pink face
Battered by the news, the whites, and the blues,
Pink face battered by the hues of thorny dues,
Blood-spat a heap of clues ‘bout how it be the snakes,
The river and the snakes what put the Delta in low cotton,
Poverty the Delta in the lowest cotton of disbelief.
Let Anna Mae and her griefs not be forgotten
As we sit at wakes and sorrow song in space
Where Anna Mae Vinocasa ain’t got no place.
Jerry W. Ward, Jr.
January 17, 2015