Saturday, May 28, 2011

Gil Scott-Heron 1949-2011

One of the true greats has gone, scythed down at a mere sixty two. Gil was a visionary and a poet - a father of hip hop - and, as a drug addict who was arrested and imprisoned for his "crimes," a victim of the way that America treats its poor and its errant. He was a novelist, poet, singer and seer. Gil spoke about a different America to the newscasters and politicians. He saw through the rhetoric and lies and fixed his steely gaze on poverty and iniquity, on madness and farce. There was no American Dream for black America and Gil pointed it out again and again in so many ways, each as eloquent and compelling as the last.

"There will be no pictures of you and Willie May
pushing that shopping cart down the block on the dead run,
or trying to slide that color television into a stolen ambulance.
NBC will not be able predict the winner at 8:32
or report from 29 districts.
The revolution will not be televised."

It was as though he was telling you through a bullhorn as a helicopter hovered above your house.

Requiescat in pace, GS-H. If only there were more like you.