Word Up! Celebrating  Mississippi  Poetry 

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A Poem By Amanda Furdge  

you can’t spell Hip Hop without heart 

you can’t spell heart without Mississippi 

you can holla if you hear we us 

the soul of the south with more than cotton in our mouths

more than sweet tea on our minds 

everybody knows that rhyme originated here 

if we’re being honest 

heard in blues around the world 

Hip Hop is a southern girl 

that we nicknamed Juke

she put on her tennis shoes and took the 

City of New Orleans from NYC 

by word of mouth

made her way down south 

just like a pimp would have told her to

she crossed her t’s and dotted her i’s

knowing the Crooked Lettaz couldn’t be caught by surprise 

she fell in love with the 




and then some 

she came to meet her country cousin that our elders call rhythm and hues

a migration marked by greatness 

she did exactly what Blackness had raised her to do 

be art and mimic life 

sneak into the club and grab the mic


1, 2, 1, 2

Mississippi Hip Hop 

The bastard child of the blues 

a Stewpot Stowaway 

on the campus of 

Thee we love 

JSU Jackson State

Wu-Tang South 

Black, poor and oppressed 

with more genius in the mouth 

than capitalism could complain about 

but in the neighborhood 

WJMI and The Advocate had too much clout 

to shut the spirit of young, Black and empowered out

the essence of Finesse

could not be denied 

hearing a hustler’s prayer on the radio put a tear in our eyes 

Reese & Bigalow


the years 1988 through 1999


to understand the world 

you must first understand a place like Mississippi 

a mecca for movement and music

art and poetry 

from Caught Up In the Game David Banner and Firewater Kamikaze

to the Sonic Boom of Coke Bumaye and I Ain’t Stressin’ Today Dear Silas

Mississippi will forever be home to supreme lyrical stylists

50 years of milage 

Word Up! 

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Word Up! Celebrating  Mississippi  Poetry 

By Jackson Advocate News Service
October 2, 2023