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'This Thing Called Life'

Poetry Inspired by the
Music and Spirit of Prince

Prince Rogers Nelson


Karl W. Carter Jr.

About the Poet

Karl W. Carter, Jr. was born in New Orleans, La. and grew up in Los Angeles, Calif.

He began writing poetry while attending Howard University School of Law. He is the author of three books of poems: Southern Road and Selected Poems (CreateSpace, 2014), Sojourner and Other Poems (CreateSpace, 2010), and A Season in Sorrow (Broadside Press, 1972) and the poetry broadside Three Poems (Broadside Press, 1972).

His poetry appears in numerous anthologies, including: Understanding the New Black Poetry: Black Speech and Black Music as Poetic Reference (William Morrow, 1973); Synergy D.C. Anthology (Energy Black South Press, 1978); The Poet Upstairs: An Anthology of Washington Area Poets (Washington Writers Publishing House, 1979); Off the Record: An Anthology of Poetry By Lawyers (Legal Studies Forum, 2004); Freedom In My Heart: Voices From the United States National Slavery Museum (National Geographic, 2009); and Words of Protest, Words of Freedom, Poetry of the American Civil Rights Movement (Duke University Press, 2012.)


Spring 2017 »

.........Millennium Prophet
............................For Prince

by Karl W. Carter Jr.

It was Saturday night
When I got the invitation
  To this thing called life
You came in
Dancing in the music
Playing all the instruments
Doing all the arrangements
Just you
Just one person
Wanting to be a lover
Not wanting to miss
That moment of passion
    As it began with a kiss
With Darling Nikki
Wearing a Raspberry Beret
With a lion in your pocket
      Ready to roar
The beat so strong it shook the floor
Telling us to just have fun
Telling us if you didn’t come to party
Don’t knock on your door
Some said you had a Dirty Mind
But you just wanted to be some kind of friend
Remembering how love and friendships end
Sometimes like your mother never satisfied
Sometimes like your father too bold
Your lyrics telling us we were moving too fast
  That life was just a party
  And parties didn’t last
  But then ---- when I wrote this
    I was dreaming
      Dreaming much too fast
  When I woke you had passed
  You had left us crying
        Crying again

Crying in the Purple Rain.




Karl W. Carter Jr. ~




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