Daniel Hector Maluka distinguishes senses associated to both day and night -a dichotomous reaction garnered from the people we see and the people we see in ourselves. With theological and historical undertones, as well as choice verbal consonance, identity and issues of race are challenged, further embedding ideas of personal and societal struggle.
We hope you enjoy the trip on this late Friday afternoon.
Dozens of feet tip toe and patter towards the exit
Whispers and hushed words of conversations whirl past
The sunder of their meaningless lives fills my ears
Sounds of joyous success and crippling failure
Half heard in cell phone conversations
Lovers, friends, employees, employers, acquaintances, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers, sons, daughters
I heard them all.
The cold draft from the metro crawls across my skin
I move in with the herd shuffling mindlessly towards the
The shepherd at the front of the pack leads them onward. Am I the savior?
I look straight ahead, blind to them. My ears filled with lyrical profanities,
Deaf to them
Their bodies shove me this way and that, hitting me without any thought.
I pushed them all.
Looks shared with strangers, in that instant
In that one single moment thousands of words were shared
Yet nothing was said. My conciseness merged with hers
In a miasma of curiosity and wonder and like a glorious thunder she smiled
Acknowledging the single moment we shared. She looked impressed
I must confess her stop was next. The rest of the train car
I sensed them all.
That night they arrived. I sensed them; I heard them all I tried to
Spirits or demons? Angels are what I want to believe in
A presence in my mind, I can hear thoughts
Vile and cruel with words not of my own
It says to me harsh and unforgiving:
You are worthless you are the son of slaves
They liked you better in boxes and a cage
You hate your own still a slave to your mind
The mentality of servitude consumes you and your kind
That’s why you shoot one another
An apex predator, you and your brothers
The schools didn’t teach you the mystery of your people
Now black history turns to black misery
The Black death–
You’re wrong, I cried, all day every moment, I try
I am a credit to my race a beacon a shining example
I don’t need you or another to justify me—
Silly child you have no future, you’re no example
Martin Luther Malcolm X you don’t even have a sample
Of the integrity that they possessed
You’re distressed no matter how hard you try
Your opium is your rap, reality tv and your “ball”
You’re just another one of them; you’re no different from them at all.
Give yourself to me offer yourself up. I’ll love you
I’ll accept you
Give into the temptation it’s so easy
I’ll give you any woman you want classy or sleazy
The path is short and rewarding its filled with gold
Just give me that little thing to hold
Your shining light your
Don’t dismiss me I’ve been doing double shifts
Lemme strike your heart I won’t miss
Don’t even start with that. His story is one of fiction.
He didn’t die for you; no one could stick by his convictions.
Shhh. Just listen.
I choose my father not you. You’re a twisted thing warped by sin
You look like me but you’re just a cheap copy
The worst parts of me are in you
You’re an inferior warlock I won’t drink your brew
I don’t want your fool’s gold
My soul is my life’s fire it won’t be bought or sold
I am man my own man I’m not in your control
Martin was tested.
Malcolm was tested.
Siddhartha was tested.
Krishna was tested.
I won’t be tempted.
The creature receded then, blinded by light and I crawled by deeper into the recess of my mind;
a black tide kept at bay.