I hear the drum beating.
What is it saying in the heartbeat of the world
other than look at the earth?
And the earth is there,
and the earth is always there.
I was conceived in Cades Cove
in the Smoky Mountains. In a tent.
Aren’t we always in a tent?
The red tent, the biblical tent,
the tent from other books I was never taught
that are also holy. I was conceived
in a tent and God came down
where the deer graze and the cars move
slowly over the long roads where people graze
on McDonald’s and peanuts and Coca Colas
and slowly roll through the park.
My parents rolled in the dark,
and I was conceived. My twin and I.
In Cades Cove. Perhaps this is why
I look at the earth and make a muddle of myself
wondering why people toss garbage
instead of making love and making children through love
and making children through the Bible
(or whatever holy book or unbook
or unBible or anything else, for I believe
in everything, including the Bible).
in my hair under my hat, for I am strong,
and weak, and do not understand how
to accept the ways of men
who toss and leave muddle on the ground.
Where will we go when we don’t conceive
ourselves properly? Where will we go
when everything is overrun with the wrong
kind of strength?
I would like to find the place of my conception
and sit there and feel God
and draw power from that spot
and perhaps bless the earth that way
or at least teach how to bless the earth that way
by finding our place of being
and being there and showing others
our being there.
And thus sing. And thus beat two sticks
together. The way God is always beating
us together at the very beginning
when sperm meets egg, beating sticks
together and making dry dead things sing
to do what’s needed on this dry earth
that is so in need of our blood’s water.
2 From a quote by Babatunde Olatunji