Mr. Yusef Komunyakaa was born on April 29, 1947 in Bogalusa, Louisiana. I own "Neon Vernacular" for which he won the Pulitzer Prize for Poety in 1994, and I share a few of my favorite poems from this book. I'm going to try to share Louisiana poets and authors at least once a week. I'm proud of my state and it's colorful, amazing heritage.
For anyone interested, the annual Louisiana Book Festival will be Saturday, October 17, 2009 at the beautiful State Capital grounds along the mighty Mississippi River in Baton Rouge. I'll be there! Here's the website listing the authors and poets who'll be attending:
By Yusef Komunyakaa
I take it back.
The crow doesn't have red wings.
They're pages of dust.
The woman in a dark room
takes the barrel of a .357 magnum
out of her mouth, reclines
on your bed, a Helena Rubinstein smile.
I'm sorry, you won't know your father
by his darksome old clothes.
He won't be standing by that tree.
I haven't salted the tail
of a sparrow.
Erase its song from this page.
I haven't seen the moon
fall open at the golden edge of our sleep.
I haven't been there
like the tumor in each of us.
There's no death that can
hold us together like twin brothers
coming home to bury their mother.
I never said there's a book inside
every tree. I never said I know how
the legless beggar feels when
the memory of his toes itch.
If I did, drunkenness
was then my god & naked dancer.
I take it back.
I'm not a suicidal mooncalf;
you don't have to take my shoelaces.
If you must quote me, remember
I said that love heals from inside.