"123rd Street Rap"
An analysis of this contemporary urban poem by Willie Perdomo that exemplifies the ghetto upbringing.
# 26671 | 2,017 words | 1 source | MLA | 2002 |
Published on May 12, 2003 in Literature (American) , Literature (Poetry) , English (Analysis) , Latin-American Studies (Immigration/Emigration issues)
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In the poem, "123rd Street Rap", poet Willie Perdomo gives voice to the community of Spanish Harlem and attempts to reach outsiders in hope of assistance for himself, his people and their community. The paper shows that Perdomo's poetic vehicle is in the form of a freestyle rap, the new genre of music that has become the voice of the independent inner-city youth of America. The paper includes the poem in full.
From the Paper:"This theme of violence and the mourning that accompanies it is further examined when the speaker acknowledges, in lines 8-11, his and the community's mortality. "It's about time to pay / all my debts" is the speakers realization that his life is short, as most are when raised in a neighborhood and lifestyle like this. The community is addressed in the following couplet of lines "Church bells bong / for drunken mourners". This prompts the image of the mourning of many, from family, to friends, and the community as a whole. When a person dies it can remind people of their own mortality, in a neighborhood teeming with violence like this a reminder of your own subsequent death is almost too much to bear. Also, these mourners are not necessarily drunk off of alcoholic beverages. It almost seems as if they are drunk with their sadness and despair at the situation that they have been presented with time and time again. It is this despair that serves as the transition into the third section of the poem."
Cite this Poem Review:
"123rd Street Rap" (2003, May 12) Retrieved January 17, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/poem-review/123rd-street-rap-26671/
""123rd Street Rap"" 12 May 2003. Web. 17 January. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/poem-review/123rd-street-rap-26671/>