8.31.06 - For Hasan

8.31.06 - For Hasan

for the rebel spirit of hasan shakur

by Walidah Imarisha

No stay
There was no stay
We can’t stay


Where is ossie
And why did he have to leave us
Because we need
A eulogy
For another shining black prince


too young
to be an ancestor
and too old
for this world

he’s gone onto a better place
said the bearded white man
at the candlelight vigil
outside of the prison
one candle for the
eight people


He fought for this place
He has moved on
But it is not to the peace
Of your white jesus
It is to the arms of the ancestors
And comfort
But he knows
Even in death
His work is not done


107 degrees
black crayon melts
the words burn up
oh fuck
burned up
we lost again
did we

in the car
outside the funeral home
where they’re going to burn
him up
don’t cry
hasan said
this is yr show
so im sitting in this car
with all the windows rolled up
sweating instead of sobbing
with a melting black crayon
staring at 11
bright-as-yr-blood mesh bags
full of all your worldly possessions

cuz u said
what does crying get you
waste of time and you never had
no time
to waste
so I don’t waste tears
or time
and its 6:45 pm
and at 5:58 we still had hope
and at 6:07 my stomach knotted
and I thought I would puke staring at the razor wire
and at 6:18 the press came out
and we knew
that this battle
was done
and you
wherever you are
in the sky
in the dirt
in my heart and fist
won’t stop
can’t stop
won’t ever let them
I am mourning my loss
Because I wanted you here with us
To see where this revolution thang
Will lead
And I rage at their brutality
Vultures feeding on any black flesh
They happen to find
And they are never sated

But I know this is not
A victory
For them
The first and the last
Time I saw you
You stared at me
With those world worn child eyes
And rumbled
Watch what I’m going to do
Whether they kill me or not
Watch what I’m gonna do
Ima make the ancestors proud


Welcome home, baby
I missed you
We’ve been waiting for you
Our arms are here for you
Stretching across the atlantic
And this time
No bars are going to stop us
You can rest

Only for a minute
Cause them
Back there
They still need you, baby


Everyone has to leave this world
One way
The wise sistasage said
You leave in your sleep
Or strapped down on their table
But you leave

There is an African belief
That when you die in battle
Your spirit becomes a warrior
And continues to fight

If they thought hasan was fierce
They have no idea what he can do
Let loose of the shackles of flesh
Joined with all the ancestors
Named and unnamed
A furious storm
A ferocious wind
The blood in your veins
Singing in your ears
Telling you
We can do this
He’s in the whirlwind now
And if they thought he was trouble


an avenging
warrior spirit
there is joy
in this

He is a body
This is war
And there are bodies
There will be bodies
Either way
Fight or run
Confront or cower
Bare our teeths
Or grin and bear it
We will die
It ain’t like
We never seen blood before
Fight for freedom
Or live this shadow existence
Of death

Hasan chose life


I wish
I coulda
You free
But words
Are no good
For getting free
Just for writing directions
So others can follow
But they don’t lead
The way
Only your feet do that


We will honor
With tears

That’s the only eulogy
You wanted