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Kamau Marcharia is one of the unsung heroes of the Southern Movement. 
Thursday, July 1, 2021
In the Beloved Community, We Take Care of Our Own
Support Kamau
The phrase “beloved community,” which so many of us learned from the beautiful, powerful rhetoric of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the late John Lewis, has a special resonance for Southern organizers and activists.So many of us know each other, have worked, celebrated, and grieved together. We think of ourselves as part of The Movement, as a community, as almost a family.So when one of our own falls on hard times, it’s a hard time for all of us, and we do what we can.Kamau Marcharia is one of the unsung heroes of the Southern Movement. Framed as a young man, he spent 10 years in a maximum-security prison.

There was a trial, you took the fall
So you spent ten years behind a prison wall
Solitary, you had no one else
When you walked out, you had become yourself


Kamau and I worked together at Grassroots Leadership for 17 years. He is one of the most quietly courageous, passionately committed, deeply decent, fun to be with people I’ve worked with in my 56 years as a civil rights, union, and community organizer and musician.Now he has multiple myeloma. That’s a kind of cancer. Needless to say, it’s hard on him in many ways, not least of all financially.Now Cathy Howell, Kamau’s organizing partner in South Carolina for many years, has started a GoFundMe campaign to raise money to help Kamua with his many expenses. Many of his Sisters and Brothers in the Southern Movement have already contributed, as well as Kamau’s friends and admirers from other places.

There are still warriors trying to do what’s right
They are beside us in the darkening night
They give us courage, they give us care
There are still warriors, we’re so glad you’re there


The lyrics above come from a song I wrote about my friend and beloved comrade Kamau Marcharia. It’s called “Warriors.” You can listen at https://soundcloud.com/artmenius/warriors-by-si-kahn.And you can make your contribution at https://gofund.me/bd51c08fIn solidarity and hope,
Si Kahn
“Warrior”
Words and music by Si Kahn

There was a trial, you took the fall
So you spent ten years behind a prison wall
Solitary, you had no one else
When you walked out you had become yourself
Liberated, you came back home
But you only knew how to be alone
So you learned about the you and me
And you built your own communityThere are still warriors
Trying to do what’s right
They are beside us
In the darkening night
They give us courage
They give us care
There are still warriors
We’re so glad you’re thereIs it too easy, is it much too hard
To be a prophet in your own backyard
In the corners of this weary land
To be a rebel with an outstretched hand
How are you able to play this part
Why did hatred never break your heart
In that prison where you lost your youth
Did you learn freedom, did you find the truthAt midnight when the moon turns red
And churches burn to wake the dead
Where is the water to smother out
The fire of hate, the flame of doubt
There is a silence that chills the bone
There is a choir that calls us home
If we are worthy of the load we bear
Then we can find out freedom anywhere

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