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I Made My Boy Out of Poetry is a powerful literary vision of rare scope, beauty and emotional intensity composed of stories and poems that flow in and out of each other like the most lucid and articulate of dreams. These are portraits and studies of individual souls attempting to make peace with an awareness of themselves as beings more spiritual than material in a world given largely to the latter. This book offers an amazing journey through the heart and soul of a modern seeker of visions. (Photo courtesy of John Zeuli Photography)
excerpt from story: Angels and Shakespeare
Before I could consider what was happening, a flurry of words, thoughts and sensations fell upon me like a blizzard of colored lights whirling rapidly into my brain, and I knew this was the angel’s doing, but again, paid it no mind. Once I was fully clothed, I walked through the doorway as if the angel were not there and even though I pretended not to, I savored the exquisite tingling that leaped under my skin and shot thunder through my bones.
On my way back to the kitchen, I passed two more angels. One gave off a hypnotic aroma, like blossoms weaned on the waters of the Nile, and the other surprised me by humming a fusion of classic melodies by Duke Ellington and Mozart.
I went back to the table where the letters [addressing me by two different names] were and read several of them. The emotional tone and rhythm of those addressed to one name was acutely distinct from that addressed to the other; I chose to identify with the name that generated the fatter mounds of kindness.
As soon as I made this decision, the flood of lights and voices came tumbling back into my head. Entire islands and groves of memory suddenly sprung up and I found myself face to face with a deeper awareness of what I can only describe as numerous versions of my singular self and my solitary destiny, pencil sketches of possibilities in which I saw myself as a clown, a poet, a slave, an orator, a prophet and a beggar and a healer and a warrior. I wet my lips and unexpectedly tasted a sweeter deeper sense of knowledge regarding my life.
I did not dwell long upon this shadowy vision. I picked up a briefcase, left the apartment and walked out to the parking lot. I saw a stunning blue full-sized Thunderbird and started to reach for the door handle when the car spoke up and said: “Please do not touch me unless your name is Ardell and are my owner.” My hand froze in a gesture made perfect for tragedy. I realized that I did not, in fact, own a car, and that I needed to hurry if I was going to catch my regular bus at the stop two blocks away.
"For you who have huddled beneath
cardboard clouds of cheerless midnight, your hearts pulled taut like a fisherman's net
overstuffed with creatures of the good,
with creatures of beauty and of neverfading evil,
in honor of you I step through life
as if through a field of sleeping gods
picking from the garden of their dreamers' bliss
a bouquet of light to color and feed your immortal light."
--from the poem Poets Everywhere and Always
A Master Griot
Aberjhani is truly a most gifted wordsman and master griot. I MADE MY BOY OUT OF POETRY is a marvelous collection of stories and poetry sure to lift your spirits and touch those special places within your soul. It is a must read for future generations.
--Angela Kinamore, poetry editor, ESSENCE Magazine
Magically Moving Wordsongs
Aberjhani is a splendid poet and storyteller of magical moving wordsongs. His words speak directly to the reader's consciousness. His fiction pulls you in and you live inside the stories. He knows people and hearts and pain and struggle. He knows streets and neighborhoods and families. He is the unlauded poet laureate of a whole new poetry, steeped in tradition and as free as an eagle in the open sky.
--Reviewer on Amazon.com
Reviews for "I Made My Boy Out of Poetry"
|Reviewed by Joan Warshauer
|I was impressed deeply. Aberjhani and I worked together and I got to know him a bit, but there is something about poetry and these deep stories that light a way to his inner soul. He is quite a person. I gave a copy to a former principal and she was enthralled. Read it, but his work is not for the prissy or faint of heart.|
|Reviewed by Nordette Adams
Oh, make me wanna holler
And throw up both my hands
Yea, it makes me wanna holler
And throw up both my hands
Crime is increasing
Trigger happy policing
Panic is spreading
God know where we're heading
Those lines are lyrics by Marvin Gaye from ďInner City Blues,Ē a standard now in pop culture for stating quickly how you feel about struggling to make it black and cracked upside the head from all sides in this world. It's a good song but probably too smooth to get as deep down and dirty, as wretched, ugly, and putrid as the truth of real pain and suffering.
When you read or hear recited the slave narratives, the first account stories of African slaves in America-óthose tales of torture and torment, of children ripped from their motherís arms and sold like cattle, of women raped by their master's sons then sent into the field to work minutes lateró-you get closer to an understanding of indescribable suffering because you can hardly bear to listen. You wonder why didnít the slaves go mad? Why didnít those people just go buck wild insane, lay down and die, or cut off the heads of the slave owners while they slept in the big house and drink their blood, proving themselves to be the savages the civilized free folks claimed slaves were?
You wonder the same things when you hear of the atrocities families face in war torn countries. Why havenít they all gone crazy? How can they go about their lives with any semblance of normalcy? And then again when you hear of what happens on any given day in the slums of a city with drive-by shootings, rats big as cats, and poverty stalking blocks like a cold-blooded sociopath. How do the people stand it? Why arenít they all sitting in hallways banging their heads against walls, drooling?
Well some have gone mad, and some are the walking wounded, others the walking dead, some warriors, doctors, healers and teachersó-the glueó-some demons, and some are Aberjhani, ingenious madmen spun into the darkness of agonies and sorrows out into the wilderness of a soul searcher's journey and up, up into a glorious light of poetry, lyric prose, and laughter. They rise up stronger, dragon's breath in their bellies, with gold, fantastic jewels, and psychedelic marvels, their thigh-slapping words woven together for our enjoyment and edification. Aberjhani the writer, in his book I Made My Boy Out of Poetry, pulls from his integrated selves a bleeding hunger for love, an ache for justice, the shameless lust for erotic communion in the church of sex, rage at myriad machines of this world, and awe at its mysteries and the universe's mercies. He dives deep into the well of souls and draws from it other madmen, angels, Yoruban mystic miracles, the plain old bitchiness and beauty of blackness, the threads of humanity, and the voices of wisdom in varied shades. Reading I Made My Boy Out of Poetry, you cannot help but examine your own life, spiritual vision, and consider the human condition. Itís a book that makes you think and prompts growth, a classic that you should have on your bookshelf.
|Reviewed by M. B.
|I bought I MADE MY BOY OUT OF POETRY, read it and fell flat out in love. If you're interested in getting deep down under the skin of Aberjhani, then I passionately endorse BOY.
BOY is comprised of spectacular prose and poetry illustrating passionate visions from a man who's been there, done that and lived to tell the tale. His wordsongs capture the spirit of imagination and you find you can see what he sees, feel what he feels, know what he knows. His words speak directly to your subconscious voice.
I MADE MY BOY OUT OF POETRY is a stunning work that will be read and read again and... again. Aberjhani's work has a timeless quality and mark my words, will live on long after he's gone.
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