Wednesday January 2, 2019

I pivot in my reading from the Black Mountain Poets to poetry written and published by the Black Panthers. I learn, for instance, about Alprentice “Bunchy” Carter, one of the founding members of the latter organization’s Southern California chapter. Carter used to recite poems at Panther meetings, until his murder during a shootout between BPP and a rival black nationalist group called Organization US led by Ron Karenga. In the mid-1970s, the Church Committee hearings revealed that enmity between the groups had been sown by the FBI as part of the latter’s COINTELPRO operations. Part of me would prefer to shy away from this material; the rage it provokes worries me.

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