RE: Nikki tha G and Señora Sanchez

Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt forces me to state the obvious :
Nikki Giovanni
is a silly old lady still suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome.
She also writes sucky poetry. But Dan Schneider says it so much better H E R E .

 

SHAMEFUL POETRY CONFESSION:

When I was an idiot leftist I shoplifted homegirls and hand-grenades (no caps of course, keepin’ it REAL girl… unh) from the college bookstore. I realize now what bad poetry it is, and for thinking back then that it was not, I am guilty. I have had more than my fill of militant black wahmens full of grandiose Afrocentric delusions rambling on in awful unfree verse. This stuff has been foisted on me since sixth grade and it is time to call it out for what it is: repetitive predictable garbage. Seriously, Hallmark cards have better poetry than these honorarily-degreed holy cows of blackification. Please check this hilariously dull and grim-faced live poetry session:

But back to Nikki Giovanni . . .
sane perspective from Cosmoetica:

Giovanni’s body of work includes provocative poetry from decades ago that’s laced with profane and violent language. In her piece, “The True Import Of Present Dialogue, Black vs. Negro,” it reads in part:

Nigger
Can you kill
Can you kill
Can a nigger kill
Can a nigger kill a honkie
Can a nigger kill the Man
Can you kill nigger
Huh? nigger can you
Kill

The poem also includes stanzas asking if black people know how to kill in different ways, and if they can “stab-a-Jew” or “run a protestant down with your ’68 El Dorado,” adding in parentheses “that’s all they’re good for anyway.”

In another of her poems titled “The Great Pax Whitie” it reads in part:

In the beginning was the word
And the word was
Death
And the word was nigger
And the word was death to all niggers
And the word was death to all life
And the word was death to all
peace be still

Giovanni’s work also includes celebrated poems such as “Knoxville, Tennessee,” which honors summers in the Volunteer State, and she also wrote a children’s book about Rosa Parks, her personal friend. She also writes many poems about love.

3 comments on “RE: Nikki tha G and Señora Sanchez

  1. It seems to me that who writes (or speaks, for that matter) the poetry has become more important than the poetry itself. It is all about the artist, and the art is just dwelling in the shadows, lifted if the artist is the flavour of the day, or trampled on if the artist is unpalatable. I had a conversation about Nabokov (why is it always Nabokov), and the argument was that Nabokov was okay to read because he was nice to his wife — which, to the best of my knowledge, he was an absolute nightmare as a husband. I contend it does not matter for whatever value we want to assign to him as a writer — I want to read, not marry him after all. It is sad, really, that we — as a culture, collectively — have become so unwilling to be challenged that we would rather celebrate political statements masquerading as poetry than engage with poetry regardless of who wrote it…but then, it is not about the art, only the message, and I shall end my little rant here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chado says:

      Well-ranted. And I believe also that publicly promoting and approving of these cause-mongering mediocre poets (awarding them honorary degrees for example) is a form of virtue-signaling for white liberals with a guilty conscience over history and socioeconomic disparities. They want be perceived as “down with the sista’s revolution”.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, and it is a shame because there are actually writers who treat the same subjects and check the same boxes but who are widely superior to the ones who are always featured…but thoroughly eclipsed by the mainstream. On the other hand, looking at recent poetic publications, I suppose obscurity beats exposure. When have we become so ready to celebrate mediocrity?

        Liked by 1 person

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