Sunday, January 18, 2009

K. Curtis Lyle live at The Royale on Inauguration Day

It must be well known by now or at least come as no surprise that The Royale (3132 S. Kingshighway Blvd.) is hosting an Inauguration Day party for President Barack Obama on Tuesday, January 20 from 2-6 p.m.

It may be news that Poetry Scores house poet K. Curtis Lyle will be in the house to perform his suite for Obama, Barackutopia. Here is how that great poem begins, after a epigraph from Song of Solomon: “Our bed is green”.


1. Reconciliation

I receive the believer who was charred by the fire
I accuse and accept the perennial liar
I take pleasure in setting day on top of the night
My historical measure
Welcomes the wedding of the black and the white

The people decide, not political whim
Human beings once blind, now look out over the rim
They see the weeping of Blackness
They hear the confusion of blood
They feel their knees once rubbed down to the bone
Now redeemed at the shores of counsel and home
That the heart could wake marrow and then make it care
That love could become herald when hatred was there
Is a tribute to patience and to faith and to plan
Recognition that courage is at the heart of the man
It could all end tomorrow or become the fat of the ground
You make the call; tell me brother and sister
If what was lost is now found

- K. Curtis Lyle

And on and on it goes, with its surprising, generous, unsentimental truths. "That love could become herald when hatred was there". Wow.

Curtis will go some time between 2 and 4 p.m. Sorry I can't be more precise at this time. The Royale proprietor Steven Fitzpatrick Smith will be in D.C. for the big day, and he has left Allison Trombley (she with the most magnificent name) to put this thing together in a big hurry.

In what is becoming a frustrating pattern (hallo, Thomas!), I agreed to do it but then realized I just can't, being the white guy at the black paper the day the black guy is moving into The White House when all of the black folks at the black paper will be in the nation's capital for the occasion. That will be me in the Obama T-shirt that reads, "My staff went to Washington for the Inauguration, and all I get is to fret that their copy and photographs will come in on time."

But to ask for me and get K. Curtis Lyle instead is, what can I say, the bargain of a lifetime. "You make the call; tell me brother and sister/If what was lost is now found".


Photographs of Richard Rodriguez's public Obama art by me during the New Monastic Workshop.

1 comment:

Stefene said...

Damn, I will be at work. That bums me out. I never pass up a chance to see the amazing K. Curtis Lyle read. We will be by after work hopefully, and maybe he will still be about! That poem (like all of Curtis' poems) knocks my socks off. And I don't care if it's two degrees in St. Louis, that is one reason I don't mind being sockless.