So Fats Domino and his family ended up staying with Louisiana State University's quarterback in Baton Rouge, along with twenty other people. Looka! has an ongoing update about New Orleans' musicians (scroll down a bit for today's update here). Antoinette K-Doe and Alex Chilton are still unaccounted for. The blog's proprietor, Chuck Taggart, is also the producer of "Doctors, Professors, Kings & Queens: The Big Olí Box Of New Orleans", whose profits will be donated to the American Red Cross. (And hell, even if they weren't, it looks mighty tasty.) [Update September 7th: according to Looka! Alex Chilton and Antoinette K-Doe are alive and have been accounted for. Be of good cheer people of Google.] Anyway, here are two poems on Louisiana and football. Trust me, you'll like them:
Excerpted from "A Good Memory", from Neon Vernacular, Yusef Komunyakaa
9. White Port & Lemon Juice At fifteen I'd buy bottles & hide them inside a drainpipe Behind the school Before Friday-night football. Nothing was as much fun As shouldering a guard To the ground on the snap, & we could only be destroyed By another boy's speed On the twenty-yard line. Up the middle on two, Joe. Eddie Earl, you hit that damn right tackle, & don't let those Cheerleaders take your eyes off The ball. We knew the plays But little about biology & what we remembered about French Was a flicker of blue lace When the teacher crossed her legs. Our City of Lights Glowed when they darkened The field at halftime & a hundred freejack girls Marched with red & green penlights Fastened to their white boots As the brass band played "It Don't Mean A Thing." They stepped so high. The air tasted like jasmine. We'd shower & rub Ben-Gay into our muscles Till the charley horses Left. Girls would wait among the lustrous furniture Of shadows, ready to Sip white port & lemon juice. Music from the school dance Pulsed through our bodies As we leaned against the brick wall: Ernie K-Doe, Frogman Henry, The Dixie Cups, & Little Richard. Like echo chambers, We'd du-wop song after song & hold the girls in rough arms, Not knowing they didn't want to be Embraced with the strength We used against fullbacks & tight ends on the fifty. Sometimes they rub against us, Preludes to failed flesh, Trying to kiss defeat From our eyes. The fire Wouldn't catch. We tried To dodge the harvest moon That grew red through trees, In our Central High gold- &-blue jackets, with perfect Cleat marks on the skin."Correction and Amplification", from Between the Chains, Turner Cassity
"Boudin, the dark, unbelievably hot sausage beloved of the Legionaries, is unknown outside of North Africa." -- Charles E. Mercer, Legion of StrangersHigh stumps that were the palm trees are the lights; The low palmettos fence the stadium. The high-school football team of Lafayette, Louisiana, runs out on the field In contact lenses and an endless text Of Cajun names. It is the Catholic High school; a jewelry of Crosses tics Among the cheering section and the band, Whose majorettes are Vietnamese. A priest -- Ex-chaplain, or of some sophistication -- Sees to it that the pom-pom is confined To two cheerleaders, who are blond and male. The buzzing mildness of the winter night Is all we have of Indochina; that, And rattling in the unbeheaded palms. Sahara is the stronger presence felt, Although the locals have no sense of it. Although the caps are not the kepi quite, It'sHot Boudin! Cold Coosh-Coosh! Lafayette Our Savior! Push! Push! Push!The south of I-10 vowels make the rhyme, And couscous here is cornbread. Boudin, though, Is boudin, even if it's made with pork, And with the pig's unspeakables at that. Our Savior's opposition does not flinch. A little of the march-or-die is there, As well it might be. That opposing team Is Algiers High. Algiers, Louisiana, Opposite downtown New Orleans, but post-colonial is where you look, And if the march sounds French, all marches do. Take back the pom-pom, Girls; Algiers, rip up The infidel and make that next first down. Marquis de Lafayette knew revolution too.