“Down the Way . . .Day, Oh! Day, Oh!” – a poem by Joe Potts

August 3rd, 2023

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photo by Carl Van Vechten/Library of Congress

photo by Carl Van Vechten

Harry Belafonte, 1954

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Down the Way . . .Day, Oh! Day, Oh!

The phrase that brought to us
…….. The Sunny Day
….. The Warm of the ocean
The Joy of observing of Life . . .
Not only our own but of a World of Dreams.

The troubadour that was so much more . . .
…. Bring me a little water, Sylvie
…. Bring me a little water, now . . .

Please, jump in da line and rock your body in time. . .
The almost husky voice of that lyric
Followed by the shout of the spell of the Blues sung by
…. He who is and will forever be Blue.
So many great sounds . . .
From our longings – to escape the fields, the broken heart,
…. The peace of rest.
The troubadour that raised up his people and all of us
…. Through his voice but mostly by his caring of all,
…. The hopeless at first and then the hopeful.
By soothing our longings and giving courage to continue.

He was the knight of our realm. Not only our realm, but Our lives.
He was always more than the traveler we followed after . . .
…. Beyond dreams of sunshine and beyond that hill yonder
With Abraham, Martin, John, Bobby . . . and all the others.
…….. Never will there be another
…….. So tall, so strong, so loved, so giving!

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Joe Potts is a native of Boston, educated at Northeastern University (BA/MBA), where he also taught for 33 years. He was also an executive in the finance industry for many years..

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Listen to the 1955 recording of Harry Belafonte singing “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song) [RCA Records]

 

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In This Issue

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A Collection of Jazz Poetry — Spring/Summer, 2024 Edition...In this, the 17th major collection of jazz poetry published on Jerry Jazz Musician, 50 poets from all over the world again demonstrate the ongoing influence the music and its associated culture has on their creative lives.

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