In The Company of Genius

A Poem for Janfrey Preston. Ark-Eye-Text, 1939-2020

By Eugene B. Redmond

His Forebears revered

Ancient Things--Stars, Pyramids

Proverbs & Kinships--  

Endured Middle Passages 

& Great Migrations UpSouth.

Nestled in Their Dreams, Janfrey trailed The

Birth of Jazz Ntu East Saint Love. 

Beloved East Saint Love of Sheer Growth  

Sheer Sketch  Sheer Sound  Sheer Rhythm  Sheer 

Heights  Sheer Where-With-All: To Create. 

To Empower. To Design/Endow Empire. All

The while Preston after Preston Pressed On!

Like Jazz, Janfrey knew no limits &,

Like Jazzicians, he improv’d upon improv upon

Genius. As he drew mighty breaths, he 

Drew a mighty edifice that cried, “Call 

Me The Mary Brown Center.” Another crooned,

“My name is Paul Laurence Dunbar Elementary 

School”—so “Jump back, honey, jump back!”            

I love writing in Lincoln Park. Olympians 

Al & Jackie Joyner grew up nearby.

Lincoln High School & St. Paul Baptist 

Church are also Neighbors. Miles Davis went 

To the school, church & park. And

Janfrey would re-Imagine/re-Build all

Three. The Moral: Genius Keeps Genius Company.                                                                                  

East Saint Love: Village

After Village—Stars, Kinships,

Ark-Eye-Texts, Prestons.

June 4, 2022