"The Mad Ones are Fearless" is my ode to the underground art movement. The piece shares a list of artists deeply embedded in the city's fabric: stellar individuals teaching love and working with urgency, going places and making it better.
This poem is my tribute to them. We are the movement.
THE MAD ONES ARE FEARLESS
There's a never-ending circuitry of energy running around my residency
some nights I never wanna sleep..
Readin', writin', paintin' singin' freestylin' smilin', constant creation..
Relayin the eternal message & the message is:
Teach love & work with urgency..
Share your gifts & keep the world turnin'..
Keepin' the keys burnin' & the words earning interest --
The mad ones are fearless!
Rise up & hear this! Let your light shine, climb,
Summon the divine & do the damn thing!
Let's shake the core of many into one solid frenzy..
The eastside is a hotbed of music Highland Park to Alhambra
Kajmere Sound Distribution is deep in Elysian Valley..
A river once ran thru this district now it's factories,
Houses & Chinese immigrants.
In a barrio built below bridges we get religious making music,
Spanglish is our second language
The mad ones are fearless!
because the spirit joins the flesh
Key Kool told me to keep
mashing for the truth
LMNO said grin & bear it
Rocky Dawuni told me Hope is the new hot commodity,
War is out..
I called up Josh to connects the dots
we did the math on a narrow path
I drank prosperity in Echo Park with Megan Jacobs,
she's living backdrop downtown LA,
I took a mission to Crown City Earthtones
Raashan Kat Max Woodstock Headnod
Stricke-9 talks about the do's & don'ts
Sellars told me he'd see me around
I drove around town listening to Lizz Fields
She made me feel romantic rainy weekends
make heaven in Inglewood
Jill Scott keeps me livin' my life like it's golden..
Haul & Mason gave a 4-turntable beatdown,
the red light afterhours goes down
in downtown below the first street bridge
Live graff by Mear & the Bass is played by Miles Tackett,
you don't need a dance,
the people are the instrument..
DJ Kutmah is the bridge
between underground hip-hop
& Echo Park art kids,
he's the Andy Kaufman of club culture
Ordell Cordova is an Oakwood soldier
Burning Star are musical warriors,
Tone Tec named me Mike the PoeT,
Jeremy Sole told me even the skeptics
have grown to accept it as known
DJ Dusk told me to make some nooooise!
Wyatt Case in the place..
Elliott Smith found the needle in the hay
the Rebirth journey in massive vibrations,
Marcus Gray matters, the physics of hip-hop,
FrowHawk Two Feathers painted the Hunter & the Teardrop
Emi M. is lotus minded
Hollywood 7 roars like a ferocious lion
I salute the I & I with the Rissho Kosei Kai..
Gershwin says reunite with the elders
The ancestors have chosen well
Poetry def never slept on Besskepp his fresh step rewinds time
Mike Davis told me all the big stuff
is coming up in my lifetime
Wanda Coleman gave me the future of LA poetry
So we could shake the core of many
Into one solid frenzy..
Elevate the faith!
We go places & make it better
bringin energy charge like a St. Bernard
some nights I never wanna sleep
There's a never-ending circuitry of energy
Runnin around my residency.
Follow your bliss! We are the movement,
The mad ones are fearless!!
- More on L.A. Letters:
- Faces of Los Angeles Poetry and the Leimert Park Book Fair
- Beats and Rhymes: Words on L.A. Noir
- Celebrating Songs of the City (Plus Four DVDs)
- Beats and Rhymes: Besskepp's 'Ode to Stockton'
- Songs of Innocence and Experience: The Tone Poems of David Axelrod and William Blake
- See the L.A. Letters archives
Top: Echo Park is too bright! by mansfieldcustoms used under a Creative Commons license
- A Los Angeles Primer
- Arrival Stories
- Block by Block
- Engaging Spaces
- Green Justice
- I Am Los Angeles