Made with

It Can Be Done:  The Obama Tankas

Father went ahead

With the marriage. He played

Strange music on Gramophone.

What took place in America

I cannot say. This was life.

black   black   white   black   red

black   white black   black   white   black   bloody

white   white   white   white   neon

white   white   white   white   white   white   blond

white   white   black   black   white   white    dark

The night runners are out.

They’re like warlocks, spirit men . . .

When two locusts fights,

It is always the crow who

Feasts . . . the men of our family . . .

Complicated like—

His way of absorbing and

Debating attracted . . .

Obama spoke as if he

Were threading salted popcorn

As the eldest son—

A young man’s unruly mind.

Complicated like:

Consensus-seeking among

The Soviets. He drank Coke.

Snorts like angry bull . . .

Give me the keys to the bike . . .

Two machetes that

He kept very, very sharp . . .

Dreamed I was in the village . . .

No one realized

That the white man intended 

To stay on the land. He

Sold most of his cattle, for

Their grazing made the soil poor.

Where there’s an absence

Of experience, the wise

Man is silent . . . He sings the deeds

Of the past . . . of ants up his

Anus. And he wears strange skins.

black  black  dark  gray   CREAM

black  white  dark  white  white  tan   BLOOD

black  white  black  ash   GRAY

black  black  green  black  white  pink   LIGHT

black  black  white  brown   BLACK AND WHITE

Obama put his

Feet up on the desk. I am

Not running for the

Presidency. We don’t want

A smoldering ember there.

I know what I’m good

At, I know what I’m not good

At. I can give a

Good speech. The reality:

The mother is from Kansas.

I saw the mainland—

Your presence annoys me now.

I have continents,

I know you’re a brother and

What is most American . . .

Other than health care

Reining in the unicorn

Of mathematics,

We have ourselves an issue.

What are you surprised about?

But here’s the problem.

Once we wore bandanas, now

We wear Parisian

Hats. (A constituency of

The damned and messianic. )

blackblackwhiteblack                    RED

blackwhiteblackblackwhiteblack                              DARK

whitewhitewhitewhite                    NEON

whitewhitewhitewhitewhitewhite                              BLOND

whitewhiteblackblackwhitewhite                              BLOODY

The white folks want me

To run, the black folks think I’m

Going to get killed.

[1] Leon Füel-Bauersachs -- Created at Princeton University in Spring 2013 for the class Art in the Tradition of Appropriation and Intertextuality. Leon Füel-Bauersachs is a composite poet, consisting of Katie Brite, Lynse Cooper, Emily Erickson, and Lauren Schwartz, as well as faculty member John O’Connor. Source material for this work includes Dreams From My Father, by Barack Obama, and The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama, by David Remnick.