Poverty ain't hard to seePregnant with Liberation and LarcenyBreast feeding Uprising and Armed RobberyOn that same mother's milk raised my brother and me
Poverty mothered my brother and I just fineGovernment named us Revolution and CrimeThem bad ass kids acting up all the damn timeEverything but obeying a thieving king on our law defying minds
Revolution and CrimeYou know my brother and IThem niggas who love to get out of lineBlame Mama for making us the rebellious kindYou try raising Revolution and CrimeWe crash auction block parties ready to dieLick a shot at them cops terrorizing our livesMama said: they don't mind us dead or alive
Watch the lies televised to justify genocidePoisoning sub- Saharan soil so seeds can't breatheMorphing mayan queens into morphine fiendsWealth is who her old man claims to be
Greed must be his secret identityNo payback for native lands jackedAfter centuries of new world slaughterTurned indigenous holocaust into a holiday
Celebrates the sons and daughters his weapons work to annihilateGives thanks after taking bloody borders awayThen swears law and order is the only wayNo wonder we was raised to misbehave [End Page 1]
Mama said: Don't be no happy slaveRaise hell until you kiss the graveTrade that flesh in for the dirtFrom whence we came
When you return to the Earth that birthed usBefore the envious cursed usKnow the first shall be lastAnd the last shall be first
Dust crushed but risingCheck the color of us you can't denyThe Mother of Revolution and CrimeTaught us these lessons so we'd survive
Mama said: live on your feetCause on your knees you deadYou better break these chains of oursQuit pickin cotton & cuttin cane for cowards
Get up, stand up, break Assata out the slammerReprogram old man Sam's geopolitical grammarAnywhere Fear shoots from Bed- Stuy to BeirutSoutheast streets to Harlem and Havana
Study your weapons and your wordsMaster the art of war and the science of herbsLearn to organize and occupy leaving no identifying marksCrack that bell hooks, build on Fanon and get on your Marx
Get set and go for yours with a planKnow what the pentagon and the projects are aboutInfiltrate Greed's organization if you must And then bust your ass back outScore a set of blueprints for the white house and the crack house
Nobody got time for anything but changeTime to change Mama's nameTime we Mama's nameChange Mama's name
Back to Power [End Page 2] [End Page 3]
Described by Cornel West as an artist who "… speaks his truth with a power we desperately need to hear," Bryonn Bain is a hip hop theater innovator, spoken word poetry champion, prison activist, actor and educator. Wrongfully imprisoned while studying at Harvard Law, Bryonn sued the NYPD, interviewed with Mike Wallace on "60 Minutes," and wrote The Village Voice cover story—"Walking While Black" which received over 100,000 replies—the largest response in the history of the nation's most widely-read progressive newspaper. Bain organized prison workshops in 25 states on his annual tour to correctional facilities nationwide. correctional facilities nationwide.
His critically acclaimed one-man multimedia production, Lyrics From Lockdown—executive produced by Harry Belafonte—tells the story of his wrongful imprisonment through hip hop theater, spoken word poetry, calypso, classical music, and letters exchanged with fellow poet, Nanon Williams, who was sentenced to Death Row at 17 for a crime he did not commit. Developed in prisons across the country, the production has sold out on three continents with standing ovations in Europe, Asia and Africa.
Bain's latest film—"BaaaddD Sonia"—tracing the life and work of Black Studies pioneer and poet Sonia Sanchez, was nominated for a 2017 Emmy. Bryonn's discussions on BET's award-winning show My Two Cents aired weekly in over 20 million homes, and his interviews have included Dolores Huerta, Tavis Smiley, LL...