First time I see a jar rise up,
I be midwifed into life.
Understood how these pots and I be kin
-- dismissed to what’s under foot.
I learned to turn and turn --
people the world with pots.
I pour my need into the knead
until forty thousand around me crowd,
but everything I love, I lose
so I want what I mold to hold.
Even my empty pots
be full. One say:
I wonder where is all my relations
Friendship to all – and every nation.
There are lanterns in my words –
every story got another story.
Some call me Dave the slave, if that’s all they got,
I say leave the rhymes to me.
When people look at me, a slave be
the first excuse they use not to see me.
I say praise me. It won’t fall on deaf ears.
I catch praise like most people catch naps.
I am a 6-foot vessel of anything, but ordinary
a one of a kind with a Carolina shine.
I stepped out of the rows of cotton
to master the potter’s wheel.
I take the wind out of can’t.
with my mark, I make a mark.
I sign my name Dave.
I don’t write slave.
See if my pots and I spin history.
See if we hold hold hold