By Michael F. Hopkins
A master fighter who found peace,
he would show a nervous world
how to stand firm
The rascal who taught us honor,
he held the torch high and bright.
His grasp for Justice never faltered,
even when he could barely stand.
He was a taunting poem.
He was a grim, brilliant
dance. He was a reality
none could dodge.
He gave us a humanity that never stops
growing. His strength offers a humility
which never stops caring.
The boxer ranks high.
The jester bites deep.
The brother, profound
a man who dares us all to look and leap.
Contributor’s Note: MICHAEL F. HOPKINS is a Buffalo-based poet, educator, jazz critic and social commentator who has been active in the arts community for more than three decades. He is the author of “A Kind Of Twilight” (Smiling Cat Publications), writes and edits the ongoing critical forum “A Deeper Groove,” and has written for such periodicals as The Black Scholar, Contact II and the international jazz magazine Coda.