Friday, April 16, 2010

for mongo santamaria (13)

for mongo santamaria
(1917 -- 2003)

baba mi jijo
my father, please dance
ijo leegun n jo
a masquerade should dance
bo loo dara, oro asimo
punishment awaits those who refuse
to honor a masquerade
egungun chant

conguero. yr hands beat a sacred path from
conga, to tumbadora to quinto, much
like yr sojourn from hustle/playing en las
calles locales de havana to the
night club tropicana; & from mexico
to new york & perez prado, cal tjader
y tito puente! the spirit of ayan
came upon u; made those congas sound like igbin
ipese & ogidan
, drums sacred to
the yoruba; possessed bebop declaring
u "are ilu", mighty chief of drummers

© Joseph McNair;2010


  1. Isn't mongo a senagalese name for chief? You honor this ancestor well!

  2. He made me quit pretending to play conga drums!