Who Killed McDuffie? A definitive question

Jamala Rogers performed this powerful poem since the 1980s, always wondering about the author. She would update the names with the latest police murder. Sadly, there was a never ending roll call of black children, women, and men that made the poem ever relevant and timely. After the Trayvon Martin murder and changing the names and cities yet again, she finally found him on Facebook.

Harold Lee Rush aka Hakim Al-Jamil is a creative artist who has used his talents in theater and spoken word to raise the consciousness of his community. You can hear him dropping knowledge on “Live with Harold Rush” at Chicago’s 893FM WKKC radio.



Who Killed McDuffie?

A definitive question

By Hakim Al-Jamil

his brain was crashed

cranium crashed

skull fractured/broken

all the way around

but they said those who beat him

didn’t kill him

so who killed mcduffie?

maybe it was the same ones that didn’t kill

clifford glover/randy heath/jay parker

claude reese/randy evans/luis baez

arturo reyes/bonita carter/eula love

elizabeth magnum/arthur miller

and countless others

when there fingers slipped or

they musta tripped

maybe it was the same ones

who didn’t kill

jose torres/zayd shakur/fred and carl hampton

jonathon jackson and george jackson/ joe dell

twyman myers/spurgeon winters

and a few hundred others

perhaps it was those who didn’t kill



and quite a few thousands more

do you suppose it may have been those

who didn’t kill

the indians and mexicans

who didn’t steal african people

halfway across the planet

who didn’t loot our customs/cultures

religions/languages/labor and land

who didn’t steal a continent

and claim that they discovered it

who didn’t bomb the japanese/

vietnamese and boriqua too

do you think it might have been those

who didn’t kill at


detroit/newark/ el barrios

at jackson state, at southern u

at the algiers motel

who didn’t shoot mark essex for

16 hours after he was dead

ask them and they’ll tell you

what they didn’t do

but they can’t tell you

who killed mcduffie

maybe it was one of those

seizures unexplainable

where he beat himself to death

it wouldn’t be unusual

our history is full of cases where we

attack nightsticks with our heads

choke billyclubs with our throats

till we die/

jump in front of bullets with our backs/

throw our selves into rivers

with our hands and feet bound/

hang ourselves into rivers

with our hands and feet bound/

hang ourselves on trees/in prison cells

by magic

so it shouldn’t be a mystery

that nobody killed mcduffie

he just died the way

so many of us do

of a disease nobody makes a claim to

the police say they didn’t do it

the majors say they didn’t do it

the judges say they didn’t do it

the government say it didn’t do it

nixon say he didn’t do it

the fbi/ cia/military establishment

say they didn’t do it

xerox/exxon/itt say they didn’t do it

the klan and nazis say they didn’t do it

(say they were busy in greensboro and wrightsville)

I know I didn’t do it

that don’t leave nobody but you

and if you say you didn’t do it

we’re right back where we started

looking for nobody who killed mcduffie

you remember nobody don’t you

like with de facto segregation

where they said the schools were segregated

but nobody did it on purpose

like when they said there’s been

job discrimination for years

but nobody it intentionally

that’s the nobody we’re looking for

the one with the motive

to kill mcduffie

and you see, we MUST find

this nobody who slew mcduffie

because the next person

nobody will beat/stomp/hang or shoot to death

won’t be mcduffie

you should know the reason of

who killed mcduffie

it’ll be you or someone close to you

so for your own safely

you should know the pedigree of

who kill mcduffie

you should know the reason of who

killed mcduffie

you should remember all those forgotten

who died of the disease


makes a claim to

so we won’t be here asking

who killed you

Courtesy of Jamala Rogers and her book Ferguson is America: Roots of Rebellion

Haiku of Tateo Fukutomi

Tateo Fukutomi was born in Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan and is an accomplished haiku poet. He began to write haiku in 1963 under the teaching of Tohta Kaneko. He worked in America for one year and studied American Culture under Taro Yashima in Los Angeles. Tateo is a member of the Modern Haiku Association. Some of his haiku books include: Straw Hat (1979), The Sound of Waves (1997), Straw Hat: English edition (2000), and “Trail and Error in a Foreign Land” (1974).

Memory of the atomic bomb

every time the wind pulls off my hat

I put it back on

The sky a place of exile

an American Indian engraves the sun

in the valley

A gathering of insects

I have become

a green friend

Having my hair cut

a fertile bird’s eye view

of the countryside

I walk gear-like

in the country of my birth

where cock sorrels grow

Emiko Miyashita’s Haiku

Emiko Miyashita is a skilled contemporary haiku poet born in Fukushima but currently living in Kawasaki. She grew up in Urbana, Illinois, in Accra, Ghana, and studied English Literature at Doshisha University in Kyoto. Emiko began writing haiku in 1993 under the mentor-ship of Dr. Akito Arima. She has translated many books through the years. Emiko is a member of the Haiku International Association (HIA) in Japan and is prominent member of “Ten’i (Providence)” Haiku Group led by Dr. Akito Arima.

Monday, a lot to wash,a lot to write, and a lot to cook!

With each rain, my garden becomes a shallow lake; I wonder if goldfish could also fall from the heaven?

a cicada, French alphabet, rain drops dripping, a click of my mouse, my heart beat

Unanswered phone calls

the greenhouse walls

collecting moisture

deep autumn:

father’s boroque music

son’s rock music

a morning-glory

blue to its throat

I refill my fountain pen


Iglulik Proverb

Those who know how to play can easily leap over the adversities of life. And one who know how to sing and laugh never brews mischief.

Iglulik Proverb (Iglulik Inuit)

The people of the Canadian Arctic are called the Inuit (means people) but they were previously called Eskimos. They were the last native people to arrive in North America. The Inuit are from Northern Canada, Alaska, Greenland, and Siberia and are called Canada’s First Peoples.



Speak the Truth

Speak the Truth

Speak only the truth and do right always. You are what you say . . .  And what you say needs to be honest, forthright, and your own own personal belief. Without truth you cannot achieve inner balance – balance within yourself, with other beings, with Mother Earth, and with the creator.

Good words do not last long until they amount to something.

Chief Joseph

(Hin-Mah-Too-Yah-Lat-Kekt), Nez Perce

1840 – 1904

Courtesy of 365 Days of Walking the Red Road by Terri Jean

Best of Japanese Indie Music

These musicians are worth listening to. From my blog Japan Music Corner https://japanmusiccorner.wordpress.com/

Best of Japanese Indie Music 2016


Tokyo based pop-rock group Nicoten have a professional and upbeat sound


Easy Come

Indie band Easy Come play a captivating City Pop and pop sound


Japonesque Musique

Japonesque Musique was originated by DJ Takaha that fuses house and techno music with Japanese traditional sounds


Quietly Excited Penguin

Quietly Excited Penguin are refreshingly different and have their own unique sound


Teach Us, Show Us the Way

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon the earth, our planet home, with its beautiful depths and soaring heights, its vitality and abundance of life, and together we ask that it

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon the mountains, the Cascades and the Olympics the high green valleys and meadows filled with wild flowers, the snow that never melt, the summit of intense silence, and we ask that they

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon the waters that rim the earth, horizon to horizon, the flow in our rivers and streams, that fall upon our gardens and fields and we ask that they

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon the land which grows our food, the nurturing soil, the fertile fields, the abundant gardens and orchards, and we ask that they

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon our forests, the great trees reaching strongly to the sky with earth in their roots and heavens in their branches, the fir and the pine and the cedar, and we ask that they

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon the creatures of the fields and forests and the seas, our brothers and sisters the wolves and deer, the eagle and dove, the great whales and the dolphin, the beautiful Orca, and salmon who share our Northwest home, and we ask that they

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

We call upon all those who have lived on this earth, our ancestors and our friends, who dreamed the best for future generations, and upon whose lives our lives are built, and with thanksgiving, we call upon them to

Teach Us, Show Us the Way

And lastly, we call upon all that we hold most sacred, the presence and power of the Great Spirit of love and truth which flows through all the Universe, to be with us to

Teach Us, Show, Us the Way

Anon, 18th century, Chinook

The Chinook Nation are from the lower Columbian River Region of Oregon and Washington and consists of Lower Chinook (Washington), Clatsop (Oregon), Willapa (Washington), Wahkiakum (Washington) and Kathlamet (Oregon) people. The Chinook people welcomed Lewis and Clark and helped them survive the winter of 1805 and 1806. Unfortunately their treaties were not formally ratified by the United States.

See video “Promised Land”