The Veins of the Black Continent – G. Louis Heath
The Veins of the Black Continent
Follow railroads into the interior for corporate
railroads into the interior for corporate
greed to extract whatever glitters to the colonists’
eyes. The venous system does not connect inland.
It branches direct to Dakar, Conakry, Accra, Lagos,
Maputo, Nouakchott, Djibouti, Mombasa, Libreville,
where veins are opened and blood let. The manifests
of the container ships read Enough Is Never Enough.
The vast, infinite cargo, sweated from ebony spines,
clawed from the Earth, first milk of Mother Africa,
thins the blood, weakens the bones of the myriad
tribes who comprise the great continent and who
hope the better angels of Western culture may soon
fledge from their moribund nests and fly. Africa has
seen this movie before, though in black and white.
Louis Heath, Ph.D., Berkeley, 1969, is Emeritus Professor, Ashford University, Clinton, Iowa. He enjoys reading his poems at open mics. He often hikes along the Mississippi River, stopping to work on a poem he pulls from his back pocket, weather permitting. His books include Leaves Of Maple: An Illinois State University Professor’s Memoir of Seven Summers’ Teaching in Canadian Universities, 1972-1978, Long Dark River Casino, and Redbird Prof: Poems Of A Normal U, 1969-1981. He has published poems in a wide array of journals.