The Curse of Ham

by Glenn Fairman7/31/16

For the Curse of Ham I walk the earth
A slave to those who bind the wrists
To a country my fathers never knew
I am draped in ebony, for the Curse of Ham

For this Mark of Cain I till the earth
“Day clean to first dark” as a beast of the land
A stigma upon me, for I am not my own
So I bend my back, for the Curse of Ham

For Ham saw Noah on the ground
And covered not his drunken hide
“A curse upon your sons and sons”
“You shall serve your brethren,” for the Curse of Ham

How just are You who holds the stars
Who forms the Pleiades intact?
Must I bear the sin of one false son
Who honored not his father bare?

For the Curse of Ham I’ve seen men die
Their children sold and love deprived
The violation of all I knew
My fate predestined. My end decided
As one stillborn, with the Curse of Ham.

G.F. 1989

Glenn Fairman writes from Highland, Ca.
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3 Responses to The Curse of Ham

  1. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    There once was the curse of Ham
    Of the bad brother’s-keeper man
    Cursed for all of our day-ohs
    ‘Cause he couldn’t hold the mayo
    Verse has also been cursed by that fam

  2. Timothy Lane says:

    In reality, this was nothing more than an excuse, of course. The West Africans who provided the American slaves aren’t actually Hamites, though this probably wasn’t known at a time when ethnograpy owed more to the Bible than to science. But even more so, the American slavers had less to do with the Semites (though, again, with Biblical ethnography they would have been considered Japhetic).

  3. Ben Plonie says:

    It is my view that Biblical curses are not threats or punishments. Nor supernatural interventions. They are predictions. Like ‘ It’s not a threat, it’s a promise’?

    The Fifth Commandment is no less a revelation than anything else. Maybe it’s not entirely natural and instinctive.

    Actions have consequences. Can we posit that dishonor of one’s parents is associated with some kind of emotional profile? and even predictive of an affinity to servility or at least a failure to reach self-reliance? and that propensity even transmitted to following generations? and that the degree of nuclear family structure in a given sub-culture intersects with honor/dishonor?

    This can be tested empirically, even retrospectively, for a sociological and cultural fit. Set some criteria for honoring, parental honoring, and test away. With no need to get into racial theory, to the extent that culture is associated with race that too can be factored and weighted.

    Sure, sure, it’s more complicated than that, but taken as a mass phenomenon it is worth at least a thought-experiment. There is probably a ton of data to be mined.

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