Jada Pinkett Smith has celebrated what would have been Tupac Shakur’s 50th birthday by sharing a never-before-released poem written by the late rap icon.
The Matrix Reloaded star befriended Shakur while they were both students at the Baltimore School for the Arts in Maryland, and she had her close pal on her mind on Tuesday, on the eve of the Changes hitmaker’s birthday.
In an Instagram video, Jada admitted she had initially planned to share the original handwritten poem, titled Lost Soulz, on his special day on Wednesday, but decided to post it a little early.
In the clip, she explained, “I went down memory lane. Over the years, ‘Pac wrote me many letters and many poems, and I don’t think this one has ever been published, honestly.
“He had a song called Lost Soulz… but I believe this was the original concept, because he wrote this, I believe when he was at Rikers (Island prison in New York in 1995). I don’t think he would have minded that I shared this with you guys.”
Jada went on to read the poem, which focused on death, out loud, including the lines, “Let me live to see what was gold in me/Before it is all too late.”
The accompanying caption read: “Tupac Amaru Shakur would have been 50 (at) midnight tonight! As we prepare to celebrate his legacy … let’s remember him for that which we loved most … his way with words.
“Here are a few you may have never heard before… Happy ‘you goin’n to be 50 at midnight’ Birthday Pac! I got next (sic)”.
Shakur died in a drive-by shooting in 1996, aged 25.