Skip to main content

Seismic Shifts: Haiti freestyling to murder Tarzan, Jane & their Uncle Toms

Ezili Danto: After a poetry show, I wrote this piece that will probably be developed somehow, into the next series of 90-minute shows: Seismic Shifts: Haiti Freestyling to murder Tarzan, Jane & their Uncle Toms

I’ve been avoiding a performance piece about earthquakes. So many seismic shifts and fault lines these last seven years. Paradoxically, there’s nothing new not already covered in the Red Black & Moonlight (RBM) series, except the level of Official cruelty, act of barbarity and hypocrisy is more vivid and vicious, with genocidal aftershocks. I didn’t know how to began. Then, in one day, after a poetry show, I wrote this piece that will probably be developed somehow, into the next series of 90-minute shows: Seismic Shifts: Haiti Freestyling to murder Tarzan, Jane & their Uncle Toms

ezili danto


Part one -
We are a people who have endured: STOP, no more. no more.

January 12, 2010 at 4:53 p.m, the world tilted. A tremor took hold of me that won’t stop but at pure panic. I’m that amputated limb stretching to explore an unfathomable agony with no arms.


Ayiti. Ayiti, they buy and sell you like the pieces of Louisiana Territory real estate the French didn’t own that they sold to Jefferson.

Maybe I’ll dance first? Maybe I’ll sing first.
Gotta get this energy out of my body first. This screaming pain out my mind, first? From my head that can’t handle this, I’ll bring it down to my belly juices, uncoiling pure energy back up. That’s never let me down yet…


Last night I was at a poetry session to celebrate the life of Nathan P., who hosted the poetry slams at the world famous Nuyorican Poets Cafe from 2000 to 2007. Ngoma and Iyaba were there. It brought back happy memories.

I hooked up with slam poets I’d not seen since Bush regime change 2004 interrupted my flow to come head up Ezili’s HLLN giving voice to those the Bush vampires had brutally silenced.

The Haitian guy at the door said he caught my show at Yale long ago when he was starting out. “Don’t you remember,” he says. “I am Haitian-Dominican, had a big Afro back then and you suggested I go work my stuff on Wednesdays at the Nuyorican?” I’m nodding inanely. He’s running things now. This session with all the best performance poets from the Tri-State area was organize by the Haitian-Dominican who caught my show years ago when he was starting out. I feel seismic old. Looked at the stage being set up, wondering if I still had the silver bullet to freestyle the old Sanba way, take down the Vampire’s Black collaborators, still had that kryptonite for the white saviors, from the Left, from the Right, who had killed the bi-centennial and woke up Dantò?

As friends took to the stage, I freestyled in my head.
Scratched notes down on a napkin not to lose the moment’s honesty cause Ginen has got to step up even if words are not big enough, tears not grief enough, got to step up even when the mind, the heart, the spirit is not big enough to absorb the shock of 300,000 of us dead in 33 seconds in the earthquake, the shock of thousands upon thousands who were maimed and paralyzed, limbs amputated without anesthetic, some un-necessarily amputated. We’re already amputees even as the shock of UN-imported cholera keeps the tremors resonating, resonating us into crazy, even as we endure the 16,000 NGOs masturbating on Black pain. Can’t be paralyze when we’ve got to stop Haiti’s Uncle Toms, return Aristide and the will of Desalin‘s people.

The Oppressors, cruelly, unrelentingly, keep crumbling jagged cement blocks and twisted heavy metal onto our Haitian heads.

We are a people who have endured.
We’ve endured since 1503.
We’ve endured 300-years of chattel slavery.
And now we’re enduring this indirect colonialism.
And it’s hard.
It’s really hard to fight forced assimilation because that’s what they want us to do. To assimilate into their profit-over-people culture, deny ourselves, our own interests and pursue the interests of the white power structure.

Those Haitians who refuse to do that, suffer unendurably. And we are suffering unendurably. Those who don’t dance, grin, shuffle and jive at S.O.B’s to the mentally colonized moronic Kompa beat ya’ll…with Uncle Toms like coup d’etat-Wyclef Jean, Michel “Sweet Mickey” Martelly and Richard Morse – will suffer Lavalas marginalization, unendurably. Their hate is real. Duvalier dangerous. Treachery blatant, yielding palpable coup d’etat destruction since 2004, but served with the international looter’s approval, spread on top of a shuffling song delivered on carnival nights.No need to mention clouded in sexism.

I have never,
in a span of a year,
seen so much calamity.

January 12, 2010 at 4:53 p.m, the world tilted. A tremor took hold of me that won’t stop but at pure panic. We lost so many people in the earthquake. I say hello and goodbye with tight hugs, like it might be the last time. Cause it’s been the last time with so many I didn’t expect to lose. Over 300,000 people sacrificed. In an apocalyptic earthquake. It’s not fathomable. Then the international looters came, took most of the charity monies good-hearted citizens from around the world think they gave to Haitians, these monies never went to the Haitian poor. Then after that came the rains.

Bodily tremors, soul tremors: shivering wounded and traumatized earthquake victims entombed on flooded streets together with the dead remains of family and friends still interred under the rubble, never removed.

Almost two million Blacks living horribly, quivering uncontrollably for over a year, under soggy tarps and sheets, flooded in mud from Hurricane Toma. Then came all the family and friends we’re losing to UN-imported cholera. Then came Obama re-started deportations back to earthquake ravaged, cholera-ravaged, coup d’etat ravaged, NGO and Duvalierist-ravaged Haiti. And when Haiti’s poor said enough, the Clintons, wife and husband, both said: “No, you’ve got to go to elections!”

The world saw the Nov. 28, 2010 election travesty, stuffed ballots, destroyed ballots, strewed all over the streets, children playing hopscotch over them with earthquake dead voting while the living banned from voting

And when we said STOP, no more, no more,
then came the return of the bloody dictator Baby Doc Duvalier escorted by UN-troops from the airport to a cushy Haiti hotel, safely delivered on our heads from 25-years exile in France to boost up Haiti’s unendurable suffering. Obama Administration legitimizing the old Duvalierists that the Lavalas movement had sacrificed so many innocent lives to annihilate. Duvalierists, the overseers for empire in Haiti, these three piece suited local looters-Tonton Macoutes -the career Haiti technocrats working for the international looters, run things now – lending a Black face to Haiti’s exploitation.

Bloody Duvalier’s Louis-Jodel Chamblain/Prosper Avril death squads roam free in UN-occupied Haiti. Roam free in the Republic of NGOs further weakening the Haitian state, NGO executives accountable to no Haitian voter. Disaster capitalism and the shock doctrine still crumbling on our heads with Duvalier dictatorship victims assaulted, insulted, yet again. The living wounded further, disenfranchised, shocked, shocked, shocked, psychically terrorized, forced to starkly absorb justice denied. Hammered down. Shocked, shocked again and again. Nailed and contained-in-poverty’s coffin: debt, dependency and foreign domination, again and again.

People don’t seem to understand
Haiti needs justice not charity.
That it’s not foreign aid that helps Haiti.
Foreign aid is about Washington laundering US-tax payers’ monies back to Washington insiders, moving monies from its right hand to its left hand.

People don’t seem to understand that less than 1 cent,
less than 1 cent, of every dollar donated to Haiti goes to the Haitian government.

But the international looters – the U.S. stakeholders, the French, the Canadians and their embedded media – are always droning on and on, saying the reason why Haiti’s so poor and unable to rule itself or to help the earthquake victims is because of the corruption of Haitians. But that corruption is less than 1 cent, the rest of the $0.99 cent per dollar goes to the international looters and their Haiti Oligarchy-local looters who apply donor monies for foreign administrative fees, foreign salaries, shipping fees, the rest earning interests in foreign banks for the poverty pimps’ charity executives or it’s put in their pockets while they gleefully masturbate on our Black pain. Gleefully masturbate, masturbate, masturbate…on our Black pain.

People don’t seem to understand that it’s Haitians in the Diaspora whose monies actually holds up Haiti, not foreign aid or any USAID, Sean Penn, Paul Farmer or fake Jake Sully’s donor donation dollars.

I came to win, was raised to win. This is how I breathe. My redemption song…All I’ll ever have is this redemption song. This libation to the Ancestors.

Kote moun yo ye?

Part Two – Naked Divinity


Maybe I’ll dance more? Maybe I’ll sing more.
Gotta get this energy out of body some more. This screaming pain out my mind more. From my head that can’t handle this, I’ll bring it down to my belly juices, uncoiling pure energy back up. That’s never let me down yet…

Feel like shedding these boots.
I going barefoot now
Apologies to HLLN at the outset
Time to shed like the arching rainbow of Ayida Dan Wedo.

I’m here now.

It’s been a while y’all
Maximum respect Atigbon Legba
Three snaps from the heart
I’ve been in another world but you all still holding it down
Ancestors’ hear.
Nathan P: its madness sheer madness.

Every day, we struggle. We don’t stop. We can’t give up. We are the Haitians, from the womb to the tomb our lives is about struggle. What keeps us moving is the legacy of the Ancestors, the strength in our veins inherited from the most courageous people in the world.

Because I eat everyday, have electricity and access to clean water,
because I have some resources and passports, it is my obligation to give voice to the Haitian who can’t speak, who have been silenced, who are dying from UN-imported cholera or indefinite preventive detention in Haiti’s prisons behind this UN- occupation.

It is my honor to suffer their humiliation and I do.
There’s lots of repercussion for standing and speaking truth to power.
It’s no joke.
What I leave the world is the work I have out here.
Tomorrow I don’t know if Empire’s vampires will silence this voice.
But today I stand and I will not live on my knees. I believe that this is what every Haitian who is conscious enough to continue to fight will tell you.
Ginen Haitians will tell you that at a particular level where we know who we are from way back before time began, we understand that Ginen poze. That means our spirit is calm, at peace. Outside worldly graven images, Ginen poze.

We are spirit at our most authentic source.
We know as spirit and in truth to behold our own naked divinity, even on these ashes, we see. Understand the wisdom of Solomon.

We have to fight in this dualistic physical environment, but all the time as we fight the New World vampires,
as we struggle,
we understand that the work that Haitians did in 1804 allowed all Blacks on this planet to eventually not be chattel slaves. We understand now that when we win economic justice this time, the whole world will win again.

Kote moun yo ye?

Nou la!

Yes, yes we are dying.

Yes, yes they are using biological warfare, whether it’s cholera, contaminated vaccines, Monsanto hybrid seeds or starving us with their agricultural policies, food aid destroying local farmers or hammering the suffering more with refusing to remove earthquake rubble for over a year, or imposing fraudulent elections or deporting the people’s voice back to Africa. Still, we understand death is not the worst thing that can happen to us. We are the Haitians, Janjak Desalin’s descendants.

We understand that how we live, how we use our energy is more important than living as zombies. We live only to lift up energy that’s sacred, worthy of being resurrected, elevated by the Haiti generations to come after we’re gone. That’s Haiti’s cosmology, redemptive way, its resurrection way. This liberty or death. We choose eternal liberty. Know how you live and use your lifeforce is more important than death. We are Vodun. Lifting up sacred energies with our life force bringing life not death for the next generation to inherit.

The vampire energy that feeds on Haiti’s misery will come to an end because we’re here – Nou la – to rise and face it.


Look out on an October’s day
With eyes that know the darkness in my soul. Then you’ll understand. How Janjak Desalin, the greatest hero to ever live, suffered for humanity, our sanity. How he set the Black world free. But they could not love him because he was a Black savior, a real savior. The first to put liberty into application in the Western Hemisphere. The Vampires could not love him though his love was true. And on a dark October’s day
on that old Pon Rouj bridge. They took his life like haters often do.


Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Part Three – Poetry Cafe
Seismic Shifts – Haiti freestyling to murder Tarzan, Jane and his coup d’etat Uncle Toms

Kote moun yo ye?

Maybe I’ll dance some more? Maybe I’ll sing some more.
Gotta get this energy out of my body some more. This screaming pain out my mind more. From my head that can’t handle this, I’ll bring it down to my belly juices, uncoiling pure energy back up. That’s never let me down yet…

Feel like shedding these boots.
I going barefoot now
Apologies to HLLN at the outset
Time to shed like the arching rainbow of Ayida Dan Wedo.

I’m here now.

It’s been a while y’all
Maximum respect Atigbon Legba
Three snaps from the heart
I’ve been in another world but you all still holding it down
Ancestors hear.
Nathan P: its madness sheer madness.

Should have been on this stage with y’all
showing my respects to the un-fragmented bloodline.
Instead, I’ve been out here stepping to the evil, almost forgetting the soul scene. Danm!

I’m in the memories of Nuyorican Poets Cafe days gone by, of Connecticut Urban Artists days gone by… with Sylvia hosting us in the church basement. Remember that Anna?
It was before the Vampire Empire kidnapped Aristide in plain sight telling lies.
Deported him back to Africa.
Before they turned Desalin’s land into the welfare nation.
Flow interrupted.

Yeah Ngoma, seeing you and Iyaba (41 Times) Ibo Mandingo brought back times before they so rudely interrupted and the DNA coursing Black through me wouldn’t allow suburban amnesia but to keep it real getting off the stage to step with the People onto this other stage…

But I missed you.
I do this piece in praise to you.
I miss all the inspiring poets, the conscious Black community that feeds our soul. Re-members the Ancestors who bring us home…

It’s time to freestyle on these blood-sucking vampires, less folks mistake there’s no Ginen Haitians out here, just them trifling Wyclef/Martelly sell-out Negros.

Time to call on Ginen drums
On soul Haiti artists.

So you know,
I’m not talking about colonial Kompa.
Twisted Martelly or Clinton’s Wyclef, who has taken off from where the Ron Brown ilk left off. But calling on real Black artists and progressives from the entire Black Diaspora. Soul artists, in all the mediums, from all the socially-constructed races.

Empire’s vampires are co-opting our people’s consent with celebrity colonialism. With Lalaland’s Sean Penns. Bling bling’s Uncle Toms.

NGO perpetual dependency symphony has turned the Haiti nation into a US Indian reservation. They buy and sell us just as Columbus sold land that wasn’t his to sell. And if you don’t do what Mrs. Clinton says, they’ll take away your visa – your local and international approval, your job – your Uncle Tom position in their imperialist schemes. Like at a US reservation, they’ll cut back on the People’s monthly NGO food/shelter/medicine- rations and allotments.

These missionaries don’t care about stealing your lands behind the Bible anymore. They’ll move you off the land and healthy organic food into Obama and Congressional Black Caucus H.O.P.E sweatshops while their military proxies contaminate the Artibonite River and Haiti’s breadbasket with UN-imported cholera to kill you horribly after they’ve softly and slowly starved anyone left in the future with Monsanto hybrid seeds. They’ve got Paul Farmer to come in as U.N. envoy for this Obama/Clinton/Bush/USAID genocide. And will say – “Obama-is-Black,” “the US has a Black president,” “we’re in post-racial America” – to cut you off when you mention the white supremacy and condescension that’s hidden behind the false benevolence of their charity industry.

Thinly veiled, skinny as Satan’s tail but they’re our partners in health. The embedded media says so. Tell us, ad nausea, how it’s not all that bad because Paul Farmer’s “BETTER” systematic false benevolence distractions is filmed for PBS minds. And those minds are progressive America, you all know that! Anderson Cooper and his ilk dishes it up regularly every six months or so.

Tracy Kidder’s narcissistic books on Paul Farmer in Haiti and that Rwanda one made for the Left by the Left to feed the Left and create more progressive Tarzans are downright convincing. They’re on my book shelves to remind me of when I didn’t understand. His-story is a lullaby that pushes on all the hidden racial codes, they’re hidden press releases for the neophyte Tarzan, Jane and Ron Daniels masquerading behind the Harvard sweater crowd, waiting in the wings for his/her turn on the world’s false benevolence stage to achieve the poverty-pimping global success of the Paul Farmer-doctors-without-borders’ ilk.

Without borders? Don’t believe the hype. Their skin and apartheid minds are the border, the veil behind which they can’t see Desalin’s people.


Ainsley Burrows just left the stage, bringing us back to primordial Black -Jean Jacques Dessalines’ color of liberty. “Ommmm.” Can you feel Ngoma?

Back up on-stage, Sabrina rocks an unexpected but powerful message on the Sudan. “Sudan means Black but being Black is outlawed in the Sudan.” Out in the audience, I’m thinking something similar.

Jean Jacques Dessalines, Haiti’s founding father, said all Haitians, regardless of skin color, shall be known by the appellation “Black.” But over 50,000 whites from the U.S. live in post Bush-regime-change-Haiti, mostly off Haiti’s misery, mostly through donations made to NGOs or from foreign aid to alleviate Haiti’s misery. No borders? They’ll tell you they’re in Haiti, even on the very ashes they’ve made of us, to make things better and don’t see color or borders in Dessaline’s Black Haiti. We’re invisible, see. They don’t see Black, nor the reservation lines patrolled by the UN, nor the sea chain formed by the U.S. Coast Guards and war ships, nor the color-coded NGO distribution lines. Selective blindness reigns. That’s why Mrs. Clinton can jet down to Haiti and tell President Preval to put in hard right-wing Martelly and Manigat who both support the Duvalierists and their death squads and have no interest in changing the system or ending the UN occupation or pursuing the interests of the people of Haiti ahead of foreign interests. The Clintons along with the Bushes under Obama are pushing Haiti to swallow the fraudulent elections where the majority Black has been disenfranchised. The puppet Haiti parliament divested itself of any power anyway, so it doesn’t matter who gets elected in these fraudulent, U.S.-rigged elections. The United States of America along with the IMF, WB, UN, OAS and all of their tools put together an extra-judicial entity, called the Haiti Interim Reconstruction Commission. Haiti is today a legal protectorate, run by a foreign-made entity that is the legal ruler of Haiti right now and is made up of people who were not elected by the people of Haiti. This same international community allowed for the recent return to Haiti of little-Hitler baby Doc Duvalier who along with his father killed between 60 to 100,000 Haitians from the year 1957 to 1986. At the same time Obama forbids Aristide, the first duly elected President of Haiti, to return because Obama says if he sees us Black majority, this would disrupt his US-rigged elections in Haiti.

Kote moun yo ye?

It’s time to freestyle on these blood-sucking vampires, less folks mistake there’s no Ginen Haitians out here, just them trifling Wyclef/Martelly sell-out Negros.

Time to call on Ginen drums.

It’s time to un-mask these buffoons, take them on lyrically where there’s no rule ’bout how we murder Tarzan, Jane and his coup d’etat Uncle Toms.


So great to celebrate your life in poetry Nathan P. – this Happy crossroads where we meet at Humphreys. Brings back precious memories, connections. Some, long forgotten. I remember that this Grammy-award winning entertainment client of mine once owned Humphreys. Days gone by, of old school R&B songs, more than Surface bling but with lyrics to sang to and music and rhythms and real melodies that didn’t assault the body and mind that we could dance to, all night long. Happy times. “Only you can make me happy…” How did time go by so fast, Nathan P.? It’s madness, sheer madness!

Iyaba, my Black Mandingo, where you at? I was there, back when your signature piece “41- times” was just hot off the presses. We worked on the same stage, well it was not even a stage. I was doing pieces from the Red, Black and Moonlight series when you first performed “41 Times,” still reading off the paper, at an Urban Artist show…with Sylvia hosting us in the church basement. Remember that Anna?

Now everyone knows 41-Times flows in Iyaba very pores – he can sing it, move with it, teach us how to turn around reeeeeeeeeeeal slow with it.

To the beat y’all…”It takes 41 bullets to quiet your fears… 41 times I grew in your eyes. 41 times to shoot me to size. 41 times you thought you saw a gun. 41 times I didn’t try to run…41 times from four different cops, 41 times before one of you thought, STOP, stop, stop…I have three boys with melanin in their skins…I have three Amadous…What can I do?”


What we can do, is know, in our deepest of hearts, that the vampire energy that feeds off Amadous’ blood, that feeds on Haiti’s misery will come to an end because we’re here to rise and face it. We won’t cop out. Sell-out to suburban amnesia or turn the other Christian cheek.

No welfare nation shall be permanently imposed on Haiti to feed the narcissism of Superman, Tarzan or Jake Sully and his Uncle Toms. We’re taking down Avatar Haiti. We are clothed in our own sacred tree. We’ve walked around in our own homeland since first kidnapped out of Africa. It can’t be severed from us, amputated from us, no matter how many of our limbs they take in man-made or exacerbated earthquakes, disaster capitalism’s imposed crises or its profit-driven reconstructions. For we are one. One love grounded in the African Ancestors, indivisible with Janjak Desalin’s indigenous army. We’ve now gone viral.

How we live is important, not how soon or late in life we die. Martin Luther King said longevity has its place but it’s not Africa’s sole priority at the expense of justice and truth. No. We are Vodun, lifting up sacred energies with our life-force not bringing death.

You will never see a Haitian go and bomb anybody out of desperation and demoralization. We will proudly endure. Claiming back Haiti’s natural resources, gold and oil. Rejecting charity and imposed Clinton/Bush/Obama grinning Sambo-making dependencies. We need no gifts of what’s already ours from the white man. Se pa kado blan te fè nou, se san Zanset nou yo ki te koule.

Haitians are a very peaceful people. We’ve never attacked anyone. But we are not the type of people to turn the other cheek as the beast of oppression eats us alive behind their mask of benevolence.

We know that because of what we stand in,
because of what we stand for,
all the nations are in Haiti right now masturbating on our imposed pain, trying to pull up our roots,
sever us from our own soul and lands. But wild scattered seeds can’t altogether be uprooted.

Ezili Danto

The greatest battle on earth is being fought right now in tiny Haiti. And when Haiti wins, the whole world will change. The whole world will win because people will see if the weakest nation, this Black nation, can step up to the most powerful and cruel vampires on earth and win, then they too can win. Nothing is impossible, justice is possible everywhere.

Call:Kote moun yo ye?

Response:Nou la!

E, e, Mbomba, e, e! Kanga Bafyòti. Kanga Mundele. Kanga Ndòki. Kanga yo!

We’ve got work to be.

Ezili Danto
man apil, chay pa lou