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Monday, October 24, 2011

Fast Day 229 October 22 2011 {Coleman Young's Funeral}

Coleman Young's Funeral
(On a Friend's Funeral)

The many colored uniforms
of autumn line the street,
as we zouaves ramble on,
bearing him to Elmwood;
a telephone directory
of names and tears of your family -
they'll meet you on the other side
as now you fly away!

They came running to tell me news -
I’d heard it on the vine –
radio novelties all day
of our cold jubilees.
On wings of song you will soon lie
amid Egyptian sarcophagi
between neo-classic temples…
marching round Jericho!


Coleman Young  -  Mayor of Detroit,1974 to 1993

Elmwood - famous Detroit cemetery

zouave - soldiers, French and others, who wore colorful uniforms; three syllables pronounced zoo-AH-vee.


Ruth said...

I love this poem.

Those zouaves are quite an image. I will see autumn trees as colorful soldiers now!

I'm sorry, though, about your friend.

Montag said...

Thanks, Ruth.
It was not a recent death, however. Sometimes it takes me time to finish processing the data and get down to writing things out.