ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

Rudy’s Place


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Or Send contributions to: ChickenBones: A Journal / 2005 Arabian Drive / Finksburg, MD 21048  Help Save ChickenBones

Bio   Nubian Voices Speaker   Urban Legends                    Voices Whispering in My Ear


Mosquitoes Fly Out My Head

Poems & Other Jazz 

By Rudolph Lewis

Send contributions to: ChickenBones: A Journal /  13219 Kientz Road / Jarratt, VA 23867  — I became aware of Rudy Lewis’ labor of love a few short months ago during a visit to Kalamu ya Salaam’s e-drum listserv. As soon as I saw the title of the journal I knew it was about Black folks, and the power of the written word.  A quick click took me into a journal that’s long on creativity, highlighting well-known, little known, and a little known writers, and commitment to the empowerment of Black folks. I contacted Rudy to ask if he’d consider publishing some of my work. His response was immediate, and a couple of days after I’d forwarded some poems to him—they were part of ChickenBones. What I didn’t know was that this journal has been surviving for the last five years with very little outside financial support. . .  If we want journals like this to “thrive” we need to support them with more than our website hits, praise, and submissions for publication consideration.

—Peace, Mary E. Weems (January 2007)                     

Ella Jackson Lewis

(August 11, 1910–December 28, 2009)

Makes Her Transition

Mockingbirds at Jerusalem (Poetry Manuscript)

Masculinity Manliness Violence  (Rudolph Lewis) / A Depravity of Logic (Rodney D. Foxworth, Jr.)

Libya Getting It Right (Gerald A. Perreira)  / Gaddafi: A System of His Own  (Hakeem Babalola)

Can We Say No to a Pig in a Poke?

Mr. Obama as Captain of the Titanic

By Rudolph Lewis

Experience, Wisdom, and a National Mystic

By Rudolph Lewis

Oedipus and Ordinariness: A Meditation on Barack Obama  / Obama’s Mojo Ain’t Working Like It Used To


Jimi Hendrix All Along The Watchtower Only a pawn in their game 1963  /  Steal Away—Reverend Pearly Brown / March on Washington  1963

Gadaffi—Obama and the Israeli Dimona Nuclear Plant  /  Key figures in Libya’s rebel council  /  Bob Marley—War—We Don’t Need No Trouble

Rattlers and Other Acts of Love

An Obit Assembled by Rudolph Lewis

Sussex County: A Tale of Three Centuries  Public Education in Sussex County   The Official History of Jerusalem Baptist Church  Stith-Mason Family Reunion

Letters of an Abiding Faith:

Legacy of a Slave’s GrandDaughter to her Son

written by Ella Lewis to her Son (Rudolph Lewis)

Introduction  Table of Contents

  Mama’s Letters from Jerusalem : Beyond the Potomac or Beyond the Atlantic

Poems from Mockingbirds at Jerusalem  (Rudolph Lewis)

The Herbert Lewis Family

Herbert Lewis and Frances Bryant

On the Occasion of Herbert’s 75th Birthday

9 August 2008

Poems by Rudolph Lewis Starlight by Starlight  Somebody Been Stealing  Pigmeat & Catfish  News Hour Scrapbook  Me & First Woman   Keeping It Trim & Burning  Fourth World Poems  Postcard from Hell  Ode to Bowling Balls  When They Flooded New Orleans  The street I live on is dying  Will the people ever wake up?  I Choose Us: The African  For Stan Tookie Williams


Nina Remembers in I Put a Spell on You

A Review by Rudolph Lewis

An Angelic Trio by Vince Rogers

Fourth World Poems (Lewis)  Raining in This Terrible Land   A New Day Is Coming   Waiting for the Great Tragedy  A Sideshow in Your Mind  

African American Writers Meet Rudolph Lewis   The man behind ChickenBones   By Jane Musoke-Nteyafas   First published: April 18, 2006

The Death of a Prophet, of Creative Militancy  / The Heart & Soul of America Are at Stake — Which Way Now?  / Remember Cheikh Anta Diop

Mevlut Interviews Rudy A Poetic Journey with Writers in New Orleans   Exploring Sexuality from a Black Perspective   


The Autobiography of LeRoi Jones

By Amiri Baraka

Commentary by Rudolph Lewis

   A Plea from Amiri Baraka

Remembering My Adult Education Students The Learning Place Northwest (1990-1993) By Rudolph Lewis

Poems  Learning to be Black   Heroes of the Hood   Thoughts from the Hood  On the Future



 Southern Journey

A Return to the Civil Rights Movement

By Tom Dent

Reviewed by Rudolph Lewis

A Review of Brian Johnson’s  Du Bois on Reform (2005) Du Bois & Civil Religion Social Role of Black Journalism By Rudolph Lewis

Urban Legends: Paul Coates and Rudy Lewis

Offer Alternatives to the Current Crop of Contemporary Black Literature

By R. Darryl Foxworth

A Life Won with Blood & Tears A Review of  Mona Lisa Saloy’s Red Beans and Ricely Yours (2005) By Rudolph Lewis

 For Frank Fitch  /  For Daddy V  /  Mother with Me on Canal Street  / Visited Home on Monday

Post-Katrina poems:  Heartbreak Hotel   No Mardi Gras Without Soul   Postcard from Hell  Ode to Bowling Balls   Naked in the Outer Darkness

  Music That Heals   That Which Hurts  In a Time of Chaos    Down by the Riverside      I Aint No Alarmist  Wintertime in America  The Propaganda of History 

   No Mardi Gras Without Soul    We’ll Never Be Back the Same Again    Which Way Freedom  Mosquitoes Fly Out My Head


Last Man Standing — for Bea Crockett

By Rudolph Lewis

    Understanding “Last Man Standing” 

Telling the Truth about Africa  Letting Her Become What She Can and Will Be By Rudolph Lewis

Tending One’s Own Garden

 A Review of Bernard Shaw’s 1933 Fable

The Adventures of Black Girl in Her Search for God

By Rudolph Lewis

For Walter Cotton, Outlaw — lynched by Emporia, VA, March 24, 1900 / By Rudolph Lewis /  Confessions of Walter Cotton

 Folk Life in Black and White

Martha Washington’s Colored Granddaughter 

 Part 1 and Part 2 and Part 3 and Part 4  

An Archival Search for Sterling Brown

Maria Syphax, Historical Revision, or a Communist Plot

By Rudolph Lewis

Maria Syphax Case Table  William Syphax: A Pioneer 

Exploring Sexuality from a Black Perspective A Review of Mya B’s Silence: In Search of Black Female Sexuality in America by Rudolph Lewis


Interpretation in Small Containers   Turned On About Two Dreaming You

A Hymn to Kola Boof   By Rudolph Lewis

  Bio-Chronology of Kola’s Life      My Master, My Husband

Driving the Blues Away Or Dying By Degrees   Responses to “Driving the Blues Away”   Home to Jerusalem  


I AM NEW ORLEANs By Marcus B. Christian 

 By Rudolph Lewis

Rudy’s Blues– Poem for Evelyn Master Jack Turns Them Black    That Aint Gonna Work, At All     Smokescreen for a Holy Presence   Big Girls Can Handle Absence     Fishing Strong on the Moon    He Aint Giving Up No Secrets  Bottoms Up, One More Round  Always in Love the First Time    Murmuring in the Smoke of Veils  Potomac Dreams of André Breton  ShadowBoxing Truth on Druid Hill   Master Jack Turns Them Black

Nathaniel Turner TimeLine   1831 Confessions

Nathaniel Turner: Christian Martyrdom in Southampton 

By Rudolph Lewis

     Nathaniel Turner Forum  Nat Turner in History by Felicia Lee  12 Sonnets in Memory of Nathaniel Turner

Walter Hall Lively (1942-1976)     /     Robert B. Moore    /    Max Wilson

State of Race & Class Oppression

State of the Dream   White Privilege Shapes the U.S.   State Of Black America   state of black nation 2005   The State of the Dream 2005

  Myths of Low-Wage Workers      Skip Gates and the Talented Fifth  Responses to Skip Gates  The State of HBCUs   The State of Black Journalism  

 Living Scripture in Community  What Would “Dr. Kang” Say?   Which Way Freedom   Social Role of Black Journalism 

 Bush cronies turning campuses dissent-free   Howard Protest  Corporate Plantation: Political Repression and the Hampton Model

Robert “Kaki” McQueen

Baltimore’s #1 Ragamuffin Artist & Musician

By Rudolph Lewis

Michelle Alexander Speaks At Riverside Church /  part 2 of 4  / part 3 of 4  / part 4 of 4   /  /  Cynthia McKinney—US lawmakers forced to support Israel  / Slum Stories: Lost Chanc


Mockingbirds at Jerusalem

A Poetic Memoir

By Rudolph Lewis


Buddy Tate – Mack The Knife  /  Ben Webster – Chelsea Bridge (1964)  /  Lester Young 1944—Blue LesterThe Cry of Jazz (1959) Part 1 of 4

The Fourth World and the Marxists   Letters from Young Activists   Lessons from France   Paris Is Burning  “The Pyres of Autumn” Responses to Jean Baudrillard   Geraldine Robinson  remembers The Family of Cow Tom :The Connection of Africans &  the Civilized Tribes


The Complexity of Iraq   /


Islam Needs a Martin Luther  /

London Bridges Falling Down  (Responses) / 

Open Letter to Dr. Hussein Shahristani /

My Son The Fanatic


Related Files

Buddy Bolden

Buddy Bolden in New Orleans  by William Russell and Stephen W. Smith

Didn’t He Ramble forr Charles “Buddy” Bolden (poem)  Ode to a Magic City  Pass the Mic

In Search of Buddy Bolden / Buddy Bolden Blues / Buddy Bolden and the Last Days of Storyville /  Buddy Bolden Says

Let That Bad Air Out  / The Loudest Trumpet  / Buddy Bolden of New Orleans: A Jazz Poem

Douglass’ 1845 Narrative: Resolving the Oedipal Complex:

Forty Years of Determined StruggleA Political Portrait of Robert Moore

Home to Jerusalem:  Journal Notes

Isaac in Heaven: An Interview Review of a Patriarchal Tale  

Jessie Covington Dent

     Albert Dent Letter

     Jessie Covington Dent Concert Artist & Humanist

     My Father Is Dead

     Tom Dent Bio

Leading the Negro into Modernity Turner, Washington, & Du Bois

Marcus Bruce Christian

     Christian’s BioBibliographical Record 

     Introduction to I AM NEW ORLEANS

     Magpies, Goddesses, & Black Male Identity  

     A Theory of a Black Aesthetic 

Max Wilson Professor of  Philosophy, In Memory of

Nathaniel of Southampton or Balaam’s Ass God’s Revelations in the Virginia Wilderness

Robert “Kaki” McQueen Baltimore’s #1 Ragamuffin Artist & Musician

A Theology of Obligation & Liberation The Poor & Oppressed in the Pentateuch

Walter Hall Lively (1942-1976) Civil Rights Activist & Black Liberator

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              By Lorraine Hansberry

I can hear Rosalee See the eyes of Willie McGee My mother told me about Lynchings My mother told me about The dark nights And dirt roads And torch lights And lynch robes

The faces of men Laughing white Faces of men Dead in the night sorrow night and a sorrow night


Source: AmericanLynching

*   *   *   *   *

Writer Lorraine Hansberry’s sober eulogy of the death of Willie McGee weighed heavy on the hearts and minds of the American Left. On May 8, 1951, a crowd of five hundred lingered outside the courthouse of Laurel, Mississippi, to witness the execution of yet another black man convicted for allegedly raping a white woman. His 1945 lightning trial resulted in a guilty conviction delivered in less than two and a half minutes by an all-white, male jury, setting off a heated five-year legal struggle that drew national headlines. Despite an aggressive appeals defense team who attempted every legal maneuver in the book, the US Supreme Court ultimately chose not to intervene. With the legal lynching of the Martinsville Seven in February, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg’s conviction in March, followed by the execution of McGee in May, 1951 was a bad year for Left-leaning lawyers (Parrish 1979; Rise 1995). Most discouraging, national news sources like the New York Times and Life magazine red-baited the “Save Willie McGee” campaign and—as Life reported—its “imported” lawyers (Popham 1951a; Life 1951). Few felt McGee’s passing with as heavy a heart as his chief counsel, thirty-one-year-old Bella Abzug.

Before Abzug became a representative in Congress and a leader in the peace and women’s movements, she confronted the Southern political and legal system at the height of the early Cold War. Retained in 1948 by the Civil Rights Congress (CRC)—a New York-headquartered Popular Front legal defense organization—the novice labor lawyer honed her civil rights . . .

Source: https://Litigation-Essentials.LexisNexis

*   *   *   *   *

The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  /  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  /  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery

*   *   *   *   *

Panel on Literary Criticism

26 March 2010

 National Black Writers Conference

Patrick Oliver, Kalamu ya Salaam, Dorothea Smartt, Frank Wilderson discuss the use of literature to promote political causes and instigate change and transformation.  The event is at the Medgar Evers College at the City University of New York. C-Span Archives

Panel on Politics and Satire

26 March 2010

 National Black Writers Conference

Herb Boyd, Thomas Bradshaw, Charles Edison and Major Owens discuss how current events are reflected in the writings of African Americans.  The event is at the Medgar Evers College at the City University of New York. C-Span Archives