Lisa Mednick Powell

Poetry Blast Nov 27 2011

This week's tidings are dedicated to Coco Robicheaux (whose given name was Curtis Arceneaux) who left this world Friday night. He was an artist--made the Songdogs' logo in fact...which does not exist digitally as far as I know. I could scan it and attach it here, but I think it should remain as ink on paper--or T-shirt. He also had a theory that Chuck Berry's hero, Johnny B. Goode, was from Slidell. Since I left New Orleans in 1989, I have seen him a couple of times. Today I regret rehearsing with my band (sorry guys) instead of going to his show the night he played on the Santa Fe Plaza last summer. But c'est la vie, as Chuck Berry said. I bet Coco will have a big second line and even though I haven't seen him or spoken with him in forever, I do wish I could go to New Orleans to see him off. Perhaps some of you will be there. So maybe this is morbid for Thanksgiving weekend. But I am Thankful to have known some of the people I have known and who have passed from this world. Here is Coco, walking with the spirit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6ogWbPTFxQ&feature=related Also in the spirit, here is a poem by Kalamu ya Salaam. Published in New Orleans in 1979. It is called Iron Flowers, after the metal flowers, which are made from steel drums and painted, and which decorate Haitian cemeteries. This is according to the post I read where I found this poem. If anyone has different information, please do not hesitate to let me know. If you are in Santa Fe, go to the International Museum of Folk Art on Museum Hill next Sunday ( when it's free for NM residents) and see the exhibit titled "The Arts of Survival." It has segments on both Haiti and New Orleans. Iron Flowers sluggish, semi-stagnant the water in Haitian gutters, small gullets, trickles green, sewerage green, here even the dirt is poor and there is a cloying dullness camouflaging even strongly persistent colors in squared, white walled cemeteries funeral flowers are made of painted iron/ i see no roses rising through this Port Au Prince poverty i hesitate to take pictures it is like thievery almost like i am stealing precious light that these, my brothers and sister, need to live