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Southern Cultures 4.4 (2003) 64-65

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Georgia Scene:

Poetry by John Beecher


And so this cat
he was from the GBI
that's the cracker FBI
kept feeling up the chick's legs with his electric cattle prod
and making them wiggle and holler
He couldn't get enough of that stuff
poking that hot thing up under they dresses
and I be dog
if one of them cracker polices
didn't break down and cry like a baby
just watching him
but he idn't try to stop him [End Page 64]
no I guess that would be too much to expect of any cracker
I disremember all the meanness that they did
treating them Yankees like they was us
dragging that 70-year-ol white lady
fown the courthouse steps
with her head going bam on ever step
Her heart give out
and the ambulance came
but when the driver saw she was
one of them agitators
he just took off again and left her laying in the street
Finally one of us took her to the hospital
propped up in the back seat of a cat
but wouldn't no white doctor touch her when she got there
Had to find one of ours
and put her in the Jim Crow section
Sure ain't like no ofays I ever knowed
coming down here and getting they heads beat for nothing
trying to love these crackers into being Christian
like crackers was human

John Beecher authored several volumes of poetry, including Report to the Stockholders, To Live and Die in Dixie, and In Egypt Land. Born in New York City and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, he became a radical poet in the 1930s and was blacklisted during the McCarthy years. He struggled against segregation throughout the Civil Rights era.



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