"A Lincoln Poem"

“A Lincoln Poem”

by Eric Christopher Webb, Lincoln ’91

This is a Lincoln poem
like another one of those ol’ Lincoln stories
your friends who didn’t go to Lincoln
were tired of hearin’ about
couldn’t believe or never understand
a poem not written by A. Dennee Bibb
or Horace Mann Bond,
but by 15 decades of orange and blue memories

because we saw the grass turn green again,
and in between
we walked through stone gates and stood
in the footprints of giants
Hughes, Calloway, Tolson, Nkrumah, Azikwe,
Bearden, Brown, Redding, Neal, Scott-Heron
Bogle, Hoagland, Allen, Jahannes even Webb
That’s right, Webb!
Giants who, like us
learned, joked, drank, romanced and danced
through rabble lines of Pi & Phi
mingled in open halls & behind closed doors
stepped in the Quad just for the love of being Greek
protested as radicals & even prayed as Militants

because we saw the grass turn green again
and in between
we made freshmen wear beanies
tossed coins at somebody’s ugly date
ate greasy hamburgers from Sissie’s
spent work study checks in McCrary Hall speakeasies
only to be caught late at night creeping
across a bygone soccer field to a secret lover’s dormitory
and having the play by play
broadcast live over W-L-I-U

I said, this is a Lincoln poem
celebrating all that we are,
all that we were and all that we did
because we saw the grass turn green again
and in between
we tuned in every Thursday night at 8
to watch Vanessa Huxtable fall in love
with a Lincoln maintenance man
always wondering if NBC would make her
move to Hansberry Hall, learn the alma mater
or go to Pump Handle

because we saw the grass turn green again
and in between
we brought a renaissance to Harlem,
hidehidehoed at the Cotton Club,
expanded Pan Africanism to earn Ghana Independence,
created artistic masterpieces,
desegregated schools with Brown v. Board
gave vision to the Black Arts Movement,
explained that the revolution would not be televised
and let the world KNOW

 I said, this is a Lincoln poem
composed of
a Dr. Farrell/Dr. Willis essay to do verse
a gotta have house music all night long
brought to you by DJs Hollywood,
Brownsville & Smoove verse
a can I check you out after
the bottom of the SUB party verse
a Dr. Tick Coleman Hail, Hail Lincoln verse
a T Phi T Track Team initiation verse
a gotta pass the writing proficiency test so I can graduate verse
a Coqui Crew/Kamikaze/Mike Tyson Punch verse
a do you gotta a calling card number
so I can call my girlfriend/boyfriend back home verse
a Nu Mu Psi/Wine Psi Phi verse
a hope there’s really no salt peter in the caf. food verse
a Alpha Toga Sigma Punk Rock
when people use to dress for the party verse
a learning the alma mater is a duty not a task verse
topped off WITH
a Thank GOD, I didn’t go to Cheyney verse!

because we saw the grass turn green again
and in between we lived
a Lincoln poem

(c) 2004 by Eric Christopher Webb, LU ’91

Eric Christopher Webb, a multitalented writer, educator and social entreprenuer, is a National Black Authors Tour bestselling author of five books, including the highly-anticipated, urban conspiracy thriller, “The Garvey Protocol: Inspired By True Events.”  Webb received his B.S. in English and Journalism from Lincoln University of Pennsylvania in 1991 with graduate studies at Howard University and fellowships from Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, Howard University’s The Graduate School of Education, The Freedom Forum, Harvard University’s The Graduate School of Education and its John F. Kennedy School of Government as well as the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Follow him on twitter @GarveyProtocol. Visit: www.garveyprotocol.com

“A Lincoln Poem” by Eric Christopher Webb (E.WEBB?!) was written for and premiered at The Sequicentennial Celebration, Washington, DC Grand Gala for Lincoln University  of PA.’s 150th Anniversary (the nation’s oldest HBCU) held April 17, 2004 at The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Women In the Arts.