Earlier this month, Raptors vice-chairman and president Masai Ujiri launched his new art installation, Humanity, in front of Toronto’s Union Station. The structure, inspired by Nelson Mandela, is made up of 35 words that reflect what humanity means to Ujiri. As part of the unveiling, he invited local spoken word poet and lawyer Hamud Mbarak, a.k.a. Pen Moodz, to recite a piece inspired by the artwork.
This week, Ujiri’s Humanity Movement released a professionally shot video of Moodz’ piece, titled “Mandela’s Mandala.” Filmed in front of the Humanity installation, the clip sees the poet recite powerful words musing on the meaning of humanity and how Toronto’s multicultural community reflects it.
“I see a city that prides itself on its beautiful mosaic/That lives to break down archaic archetypes of past/Where its citizens unite and rejoice as one, from one, with their hands clasped/Realizing the visions of Mandela, his words echoing like the sounds of the mandala,” he spits.
Check out the video below.
Moodz caught attention last year after his poem “I Can’t Breathe,” inspired by the death of Ahmaud Arbery, went viral. He spun that success into into a charity, printing shirts that read “Know Justice, Know Peace,” which were noticed and rocked by members of the Los Angeles Lakers, including J.R. Smith.