“A Two-Fisted Fighting Poem That Makes You Hate Imperialism”: Poets Against Genocide in St. Louis Mobilizes for the Uhuru 3 Trial! 

The Uhuru Solidarity Movement (USM) has initiated a series of events in St. Louis titled “Poets Against Genocide” as part of its mission to build the culture of reparations to African people. These events have also worked to mobilize for the upcoming “Long Hot Summer” campaign to pack the courthouse in September for the trial of the Uhuru 3 and demand the U.S. government drop the bogus charges on Chairman Omali Yeshitela and the Uhuru 3! 

“Two Fisted Fighting Poem” by Penny Hess was originally published by the African People’s Solidarity Committee in a book in 1982.

At the start of each “Poets Against Genocide” night, held first in February and again in June, a comrade has declared, “This is an anti-colonial free speech event!” 

USM is the organization of white people created by and working under the leadership of Chairman Omali Yeshitela and the African People’s Socialist Party, building white solidarity with Black Power and organizing in the white community for reparations to African people as a revolutionary, anti-colonial demand. 

Poets Against Genocide is one of many events that USM organizes with the goal to build solidarity with African, Palestinian, Indigenous and all colonized and oppressed peoples around the world.

This recurring open mic is for all to share poetry and music themed around reparations, anti-colonialism, resistance and solidarity. 

It featured local St. Louis revolutionary poets FoFeet Alkebulan and Abby AKA The Truth, works from African Revolutionary Marcus Garvey, Indigenous Freedom Fighter Leonard Peltier, local musical duo Trickster Figures, and many other virtual and in-person poets.

As APSC Chairwoman Penny Hess stated at the last Poets Against Genocide event,  “Che Guevara said that true revolutionaries are guided by feelings of love; I think that poetry is the expression of the greatest human emotions and that’s why poetry and revolution go together. Because revolution is about optimism; it’s about seeing a future and making it happen.” 

Chairwoman Penny Hess read aloud from her poem, “Two Fisted Fighting Poem,” published in a book by the African People’s Solidarity Committee in 1982. Chairwoman Penny’s words are even more relevant today: 

Two Fisted Fighting Poem by Penny Hess
I wanted to write a poem
That comes head on
Like a round from an M-16
In a jungle clearing.
A poem that comes head on
That trains
That spars
That jumps two-footed over obstacles
A street-fighting poem,
That works out hard every day
And sleeps with one eye open.

I wanted to write a poem
That builds in the blocks for 14 years
Until the earth is on fire
Scorched
With the hearts and minds of the people
Burning with freedom.

I wanted to write a poem
That makes you hate imperialism
Makes you hate this blood-drenched system
Makes you hate colonialism
Makes you love the peoples
Light on their feet like light-weight fighters
And always on target
Sharp, deadly blows to the beast
who will soon be extinct.

I wanted to write a poem
To the daughters and sons of
Africa
Who embody the fighting spirit
That know no compromise
For they are the whirlwind
In Africa and the U.S.
The fresh strong wind of the future
Their own liberators
And ours.

I wanted to tell you in a poem that
Inside the belly of the beast
In the streets, the cities, the countryside
The drums go on all night
Always in resistance.
It is the eye of the great war
But not yet the hour
For today is the time of building
Building and training and working
African people in Georgia
In Oakland
In Louisville, Ky.
Native
Chicano
Puerto Rican people
The drums beat steady all night
Always in resistance.
It is the eve of the great and joyful war
But today is the time for building
For setting the hearts and minds
Of their people on fire for freedom.

Meanwhile
In Zimbabwe
Azania
Namibia, Guinea, Angola, Mozambique, Chad,
Iran, Lebanon, Palestine
El Salvador
Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua
The Caribbean
Colombia, Argentina, Chile
The Philippines
Kampuchea, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam
The dance of the fighters light on their feet.
The beast could never
Withstand such sharp deadly blows.

North American women
I wanted to write a poem
To you. Listen.
Begin your training
Learning to fight like hell.
For now is the time of the building.
Take a stand on the front lines of history.
Solidarity with African people.
Take your stance, sisters and train
With your feets, your feet
Your teeth, your blood
Your body, Your heart.
Your will of iron
Your hatred of imperialism
Your love for all the world’s peoples.

I wanted to write a poem
That comes head on
A two-fisted fighting poem
That makes you hate imperialism
And love
The victories of the peoples of the world.

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