The Gift of Delbert Tibbs

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In Honor of the Great Poet Delbert Tibbs

He had served two years on death row in the state of Florida. He had been convicted by an all-white jury of rape and murder. Years later, the sentence was overturned by the Florida Supreme Court for lack of evidence.

Click here to visit Delbert Tibbs at


      Do You Know
        (for Delbert Tibbs)

        The HUman word arrives,
        that smacks us with simple yet
        profound formations; a word dancer
        whose magnitude remains yet unsung; 

        Man, do you know how great you are?

        Your life made into a movie while you yet live, 
        your soul portrayed by one of the greatest actors
        ever born; the word of this HUman arrives to teach
        and preach us in taking note of the simpleness of the
        profound yet frozen in this world of time; a word dancer
        who mentally finger paints the screen of mind;

        Man, do you know how great you are?

        An introduction of undefeated eagle spirit written
        by the spook who sat by this door of supernal song bird; 
        listen to the way he sings - so simple, yet so profound; 
        so divinely beautiful, a poem dancer, a wordographic 
        poetic technician, the laughing Buddha returned to us, 
        whose ancient message is still, 

        the suchness of things... 

        Man, do you know how great you are? 

        11.13.2009 - 3.33 am


     (for Del)

- To be sung in part





i visited him once…

and slept in his guest bed,

after spending an entire night awake

slaying visionary dream dragons from the head:


i had to practice a whole bunch to be human again


he said,


after he had died to be

reborn a brand new song;


My Chicago friend, Delbert Tibbs -


God did defend and exonerate with

a poem from death row so that he could

one day meet me and celebrate;


The prophetic ghostly face of Jim Crow

appeared on the horizon once more:


What is the price of years taken from a man’s fleeting life?


"Eenie meenie minie mo, catch a nigga by his toe, if he hollas..."


A poet that would not sell his sovereign immortal soul -


They captured him and did not want to let him go;


He had to drown in the Mississippi River,

crucified upon the pain of a Klu Klux Klan burning

Florida cross so that we could one day sing our poems together,


Our friendship of SOULular kinship.





To be human is a practice not many are willing to do,

the sleepwalkers and blind night stalkers of this world,


Those others incarcerated and confined in the prison -


of mind un-refined;


Tears fell from my eyes as i viewed this,

no, i drank, and i tasted this...


"Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me…"


This is a man that will never grow old and die,

for he has escaped the bondage of time;


A persistent HUman Tai-Chi-ing,

a Holy martial arts of all the Sacred parts that make the whole complete,

and there can be no regrets on behalf of any atomic particle included -


This kaleidoscopic Cosmic OMniversal Quilt…


His cloud of unknowing became our secular and Spiritual disclosing,

A racist distortion transformed into heroic radiant Nubian proportion,


The lethargic crawling caterpillar transmuted -


into awesome, mystical, Multi-Colored, Butterfly Man;


"I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see…"


What makes my friend so great is his humility and love for humanity,

but of course, IAM not so humble,


because i could have portrayed him better than the great -


 Delroy Lindo...





11.02.2009 - 11.01 am



The Exonerated is a film that dramatizes the stories of six people who had been wrongfully convicted of murder, but were later exonerated and freed after varying years of imprisonment, where many were subjected to further brutality and degradation. It was based on a play of the same name written by Erik Jensen and Jessica Blank and first aired on the former CourtTV cable television network on January 27, 2005.


Directed by

Bob Balaban

Produced by

Greg Schultz
Steven Tabakin
Karen Wolfe

Written by

Erik Jensen
Jessica Blank


David Brown Jr.
Brian Dennehy
Danny Glover
Delroy Lindo
Aidan Quinn
Susan Sarandon

Music by

David Robbins

Distributed by


Release date

January 27, 2005

Running time

95 min.