Monday, September 30, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 272 - No

When we shook hands he pulled me in to hug him
I gave him my shoulder
I choose
I say who I hug full on
There are instincts to follow
A gut to obey
Antennas to lead the way
I say
I say

On the bus tonight

Black man in his early twenties: (makes funny spooky voice) Bernard!

Bernard: Haaaaaa! (Slaps hands with black man) Tryina come off like a boogiemen on muthafucka!

They laugh

Ok then...

This woman on the bus stop tonight had on a shirt that said "Fresh as fuck."

Sunday, September 29, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 271 - Because bus stories never get old

A Mexican woman got on the train today and said something in Spanish
When she translated it it was this
I have incense for sale
Ten sticks for a dollar
The flavors are
Sex on the beach
Obama
And lick me all over
Thank you very much
In Jesus name

What?

Saturday, September 28, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 270 - poem 2 - That happened

On the 710 bus south on Crenshaw yesterday
A black man was sitting in the back of the bus
Sipping beer from a 24 ounce gold can
Poorly hidden in a black plastic bag
While reading a Final Call
What?

Um...but?

I saw a casket for sale this evening at the thrift store where I shop for $499.00. Yeah, um...yeah..

I guess

There is a story inside me about why many young men and women on the bus don't give up their seats to the elders, but I have yet to write or read it.

A poem a day for 2013 - 270 - Today. More bus stories.

There was a man lying on the ground in front of the bus stop who kept repeating
Buy me a bottle of wine and don't judge me
I understand

It's a process

Me: I'm gonna get a bike. You know? A cruiser with a big basket in the front. I don't care if it only has one gear.

C: You gonna wear all the biking gear too?

Me: No. Not till I lose some more weight. When I walk and stuff I like to wear regular clothes.

C: Why?

Me: Because one time I was all in my workout gear on the street and this brotha was all like 'Just keep going, Sis, you can make it.' And I know he was just trying to encourage me but I felt body shamed.

We laughed.

Friday, September 27, 2013

To Courtney, who is busy...seeing Spain!

See as much of the world as you can. Write about all of it. Take way too many pictures. Eat too much. Hug too many people. Dance. Sing badly. Please sing badly, my love. Singing on key takes too much thought if you are not a singer. See all of it. Rest. Drink the water if you can. Drink the wine. Wear something too short and too tight if you wish. Love yourself every day. Keep your eyes open for the next opportunity to see more of Gods wonderful creation. Then one day, provide opportunity for someone else. I love you. And all of yours.

Words

I get to work hella early every day now that I am on the bus. I don't like being late. I'm one of those. So I sit at the park down the street and write or draw or work on a crossword puzzle or do something else that has me not look creepy being alone in a park where there are children. Anyway.

Sometimes there is this group of developmentally delayed citizens who are there doing different exercises with their leaders. Physical exercises, they eat, learn things, stuff. Recently I was there during their break and some were eating while others were conversing. Two men caught my attention. One was looking up into the sky and he seemed to be smiling and rocking back and forth. Another man who was sitting next to him kept speaking to him, even though he was being ignored. "Hey, stop smiling. It is a sign of weakness. Stop smiling. It is a sign of weakness. Stop." And thankfully the guy didn't stop smiling. But the other guy kept admonishing him like someone had told him those words before. Like he was passing on wise words to his friend to survive in real, hard, cruel world of ours where smiling would get one harmed.

I am sorry that this is the message he has learned. That smiling is a sign of weakness. That smiling is something one should stop doing because smiling is dangerous. That smiling is something to stop.

Bus life

Today there was a young man on the bus stop sitting behind the wall of the bench. He was on the bus yesterday too. Today he was talking on the phone to a young woman who was crossing the street heading to the bus stop. There were two men walking in the crosswalk behind her. The young woman   was on the bus yesterday also. She goes to El Camino Community College.

Man: It don't matter if you see me. I see you, motherfucka. Keep crossin' the street.

Pause. I see her crossing the street saying something on her phone.

Man: Who you with?

Pause: She responds.

Man: Oh, I see them two niggas with you. I was about to fuck you up.

She is across the street now, laughing.

Woman: What's up with you?

Man: Nothin', nigga. What's up with you? What you doin' later?

Woman: Prolly goin' to the movies with my boyfriend.

A poem a day for 2013 - day 269 - On the bus today

A black man who appeared to be in his mid sixties was leaning in way too close to a woman who seemed in her early twenties and said this:

"I been fucking since I was seventeen years old so you know I know what I'm doin'. You should gimme yo number." Loud enough for me to hear a whole row away.

She laughed. But it wasn't funny. I know that kind of laugh.


Thursday, September 26, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 268 - Gratitude

I am thankful for friendships that last through thick
For love that is easy
For family
For hope
For nice on my path

In more of the same news

A woman was texting on her iPhone last night on the 710 north on Crenshaw and a guy snatched it out of her hand and hopped off the bus. Sad face.

Conversation on bus today

Girl 1: What's up? Where you goin'?

Girl 2: School, nigga.

Girl 1: What school you go to?

Girl 2: El Camino. Everybody go there now.

Girl 1: Everybody like who?

Girl 2: Me, Eric the Ghost, that dyke girl...

Girl 1: What dyke girl?

Girl 2: The one always be sayin' bitches is cute.

Girl 1: Bitch please. Because a bitch say a bitch cute now she gotta be dyke? You don't think no bitches is cute?


Conversation on bus stop last night

Man: (mumbles something incoherently)

Woman: What? What? You gotta speak respectfully to me. I'm sixty-six years old. Imma OLD bitch!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuckiiiiiiiiiiiiiing helicopters!

Dear Vanessa

I thought about you today
I love you and hope you are well
Are you laughing uncontrollably?
Are you dancing?
Are you loving, walking, eating, sleeping?
Are you writing, walking, are you angry enough?
Are you loved enough?
I hope you are
I really do

Loving L.A.


The man on the bus smiled at me and said "I ain't even gon ax cuz I know a woman wit a bald head fine as you already got a man but you make sure you have a blessed day, ma'am, and I mean it illeterally." And I felt blessed.

A poem a day for 2013 - day 267 - Another bus story

Walk from Western to Crenshaw to catch the 210 south
There is a bus that runs to Crenshaw but why miss the wind on my face while I got it
Why not give my legs chance to stretch while I can

Press bus pass
Find seat
Plop easy next to black metal kid with skateboard and black nails
That's cool
In front of two black men talkin' shit
One has a three year old boy with him
Whatever
Talkin' 'bout Gardena, Hawthorne, Torrance ain't shit
He rollin' down south with his mama
Homeboy say fuck you with yo country ass
They laugh

He ain't goin' down south with his mama
How do we all just know

Another black man eyeballs another black man too long
What you claim
Motherfucker, my name is Gerald
How many motherfuckers name Gerald you know bang

We all laugh

And went on about the ride

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 266 - Type

Having a chilly night
Heavy covers
Drama marathon
Toni Morrison
Raspberry tea
Ginger
Soft sheets
White t shirts
Cold hands
Soft feet
Two party
Kind of
Night

Monday, September 23, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 265 - Story here

There is poetry on the bus
Going round and round
The man in the front
We are afraid to sit beside
The woman screaming fire
Taking off her clothes
This bus will run twenty-four hours
These hours though
These under the moon hours
Though

Sunday, September 22, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 264 - For my mother

You gave me everything
In you to give
I know
I have seen your eyes
Hopeful
Ready
Remembering
I love you
Always
I love you

Saturday, September 21, 2013

My phone, car and computer are going kablonkers at the same time! Watch me be bigger than this!

Dear Therman

I went to Uraeus' game last night. It was a close game but they lost. Anyway, the conversation between us on the ride home was pleasant, funny and enjoyable. I have told you how much I love watching him grow up and seeing the man he is becoming. Valerie said to me before that she wanted to  rear children whom she would want to be friends with later. Well, I have taken that statement on as my own and am loving the friendship I get to share with Uraeus. Though our relationship is not all friendship. We have our days, you know.

Today though, and this is not about Uraeus, I went to return a rental car on the road that the two of you walk on when you are here. Except the car place is at the opposite end near Aunt M's home. The driver was not available to give me a ride to my mother's house for another thirty minutes so I decided to just walk. Well, I was walking east over that bridge and from the street all you can really see are trees and more trees. But then you are driving and so you don't look for more than that. But if you are walking, as I was today, or if you are looking for more, then you will find it. There are tents. Several of them. Old and dirty, cloth and card board tents. It's like a little village down there. I didn't go down there. I just looked. Above one tent there was a rope that was connected to a tree like a clothes line and a jacket on a hanger was hung on that line. That's a story. I don't know the story. But it is such a story.

I wonder about the village. What about now? It's almost 10pm, have the dwellers returned to their homes? Do they call themselves homeless? I wonder about their safety. Perhaps the people they need protection from is us. Perhaps. Who sets the rules? What rules could there be? I don't know. I always have questions. Everything sparks my curiosity. Everything is always a story.

Sending you love,

Jaha

A poem a day for 2013 - day 263 - Weekend visit

Clouds
And ginger tea
My long bodied son
Playing on the floor with
My sisters dog
And cable
Journal
Quiet with just the right noise
HGTV
Mexican food
And family

Friday, September 20, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 262 - Exhale

I can choose peace
I can choose forgive
Blessing
Again
I can turn page
I can move on

Tonight I will
Full moon
Converse with my son
My sun

I can choose laughter
Choose connection
Relationship

I can turn away from
Rocky road
For my own joy
My own
Easy

Thursday, September 19, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 261 - Gratitude

For this moment
I am enough in this moment
I have enough for this moment
This moment will not pass without my praise
My celebration
My joy
Now

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 260 - Morning. Lotus. Sun.

My heart is slowly opening to love
Self love
Life love
Again love
Rising in love
Slowly
Again
Easy

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 259 - Fly

It is more important
That story is told
That the art and music
Screaming from within
Spreads wings like
Robin

Look see

My phone, car and computer are on the blitz at the same time. But it's cool. Watch me be bigger than this.

Monday, September 16, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 258 - Record. Straight.

I get to program
Thoughts in my head
I get to say my tomorrows 
And beyond

Mahatma Gandhi



Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 257 - This life

And recording my poetry
My love
In studio
For all
Is everything
Right now

Saturday, September 14, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 256 - For true

Illusion is comfortable
Until it is not
You can not
Not see what you know
Once you see

Um, this happened

A car pulled up next to me with the radio blasting and this was the hook, no, seriously:

A nigga aint worried 'bout nothin'
A nigga aint worried 'bout nothin'
A nigga aint worried 'bout nothin'
A nigga aint worried 'bout nothin'

Because just saying it just once would be dumb. And not saying it at all would be utterly ridiculous.

Photo by Uraeus


Life

My car won't start. I'm safe where I am. Maybe I'm supposed to stay.

Friday, September 13, 2013

All day

Part 1. Older black woman stands in long line at Starbucks. Gets coffee. Leaves shop. Comes back in. Walks to front of line. Says "Excuse me, what was this supposed to be?"

Part 2. The young woman fixed another cup of whatever she ordered and said "Ms. would you please taste this to see if you like it."

A poem a day for 2013 - day 255 - Yes

I am the best alive today
I am feet magnet to concrete and dirt
This is grind
This is grit
This is long line at Starbucks and pumkin spice latte
This is how I Wonder Woman simple things
Watch me praise myself all day

This is how my face looks when it smiles
How my mouth curls
This is how my eyes look when they blink

This is how my body does happy
This is how my fingers do regular
When they are not pushing buttons
When they are not pushing monsters away

This is how my space does monster free

This is how I celebrate God
This is how I fly
This is fly
How I wing

This is how wind I am today
I do not need an occassion to be special and well
The sun is enough
Walnut bread is enough
My life
Is enough
All day

Friday

I am sitting at the El Pollo Loco in Inglewood on Century and Crenshaw at 6:21pm. I have just finished a meal that cost almost ten dollars. That may be my only ten dollar meal for this week. Not my only meal of course. And that is ok. Because I have my life. I have my health. My son is alive and healthy. I have my freedom. I have the sun in my rearview mirror and a belly filled with chicken and spicy chipotle. What is chipotle? Why have I never heard of chipotle before? I see life differently these days. I still have problems of course. Sure I do. But one thing at a time, you know. One thing at a time.

I am much better than I was. I know that. I don't fully know the science of how the pills balance what chemicals in my body. And that's ok. And I know it's not just the pills. I know it's prayer. My prayers and the prayers of others. Perhaps you too. I know it's God who is good, and all the time Goddess is good. I know. I know it's will and power and determination and strength. I know it's love and art and heart. I know it's something I have to keep up. And that's ok. I'm up for that.

I am sitting in the parking lot because I go into the studio tonight at 9 and it is easier to stay here than go all the way home. Though soon I will have to leave this spot because the police have already made their warning circle. We who live in Los Angeles south of the Wilshire line know the warning circle.

Helicopters again. One day I will write. I will sit outside and I will write about my day and helicopters will not be a part of my narrative. Have you ever seen good come from helicopters in neighborhoods housed primarily of people of color? Take away news choppers with cameras, what good are they here?

"Don't touch me! Don't touch me!" I just heard a child say. There is a a boy playing with who appear to be his siblings/friends in an apartment complex across from the parking lot where I am parked. Don't touch me. How beautiful those words are. I didn't know those words when I was a child small as he. I mean, I knew the words. I didn't know I could speak them so forcefully. Like my body belonged to me. Like I could speak and demand someone not touch my body. Don't. Touch. Me.

It is 6:41pm. I will stop at Starbucks and treat myself to tea before studio. I will love myself in this way today.

Just Thursday - from yesterday's journal entry

Since childhood I have been enthralled with people watching. I don't require some grand affair to be watching people be people. No, for me, it's more immersing when humans are just doing what they (we) do on normal every day days. They way we walk. Move our hands and hair. Look up into the sky. How we lie. Live. Be. That's who I am as a photographer too. I like taking candid shots of people and things. Yes, things too. But of course things. A random Coke can rolling down the street being pushed by the invisible wind. A bird racing to the middle of the road for bread. A wave of water begging to wet feet.

Today I didn't have to be at work until 12:30 but I left home hella early and so pulled into the Baldwin HIlls Crenshaw Plaza's mall/movie parking lot to write, pray, think, watch. Repeat. But not necessarilly in that order.

First I observed four young black men who pulled next to me. One bumped my car door with his as he tried to exit the vehicle, and quickly excused himself and called me Miss. Miss? Ma'am? Ms.? Where did the time go?

Man 1: (front seat passenger) Ey, y'all niggas git out.
Man 2: (back seat passenger) We fin to.
Man 3: (other back seat passenger) I'm finna see if this muthafuckin' phone can charge while the car off.
Man 2: Never mind. Blood just called. Let's go.

Let me say here that this is an ordinary day. An ordinary Los Angeles day just off Crenshaw. These noises are not new or unusual noises or colors. These are smells of the city. I love this dirty, stinky, colorful city.

A black woman in her late sixties pulled into the parking lot almost directly in front of me. But she did not see me. We did not see each other. We are not accountable to or for each other. That is what street life is what would have you believe. She drove an old dirty gray Kia and used some kind of steering wheel lock to prevent theft. I am inclined to believe that no one would want to steal her dirty gray Kia. That's how we do. That's how we live. Like what we have is not worth a damn. Not worth the time it would take for someone to steal it. See how quickly I judged what she has? I didn't know that people still used those locks but she had one. She had one. Fifteen minutes later the woman returned to her car and put an address in her GPS that sat on her dashboard. I think that's what she did. I thought it lovely that she had a GPS and an old steering wheel lock like that. Christmas? Her granddaughter I surmised. She did not take the lock off the wheel. There were helicopters hovering above. Helicopters are a usual occurrence in this neighborhood. I am tired of saying that about helicopters and our neighborhoods. Aren't you tired of hearing it? The woman sat in her car and looked into the sky. She seemed to be praying. Older women sitting in cars with steering wheel locks seem to be praying. Don't they? Wouldn't they?

She got out of her car again, held movie tickets in one hand and a large denim blue purse over the opposite shoulder. She took about ten steps stopped, turned around and looked at her car almost like she was making sure it was securely locked. Then she noticed me. Now, now she saw me.

A black man in his early twenties walked slowly and I would say suspiciously eyeing a black security guard just seconds too long. Security guard was in the middle of the street talking to another guard in the company truck.

Two women in hospital scrubs walked across the parking lot probably headed toward the clinic. But then you never know.

Suddenly the helicopters left as if they were phoned of a bigger emergency than black people shopping and going to the movies.

Maybe nurse 1: Hey Curtis! (She yelled to a young black man who pulled up beside her. They embraced through the window.)

There was music playing from the theatre. Stevie Wonder's voice boomed from outside the advertisement center. A black mother in her early thirties whom I thought I recognized from a poetry event last month sat on a bench with her son, who seemed about four.

Three black women walked into the theatre. The women ranged in ages from thirty to fifty. Maybe this is the hour older women feel most comfortable going to the movies.

There were five black men standing in front of the Taco Bell near the theatre. The young men were in the street. An older black man drove up and blew his horn at the young men to get through.

Older black man: Git the fuck out the street, muthafuckas!

Young black men: Ey, yo, fuck you! (As they moved out of the street)

Quickly, about seven young men ran from the theatre and rushed toward my way.

Man 1: That IS that fool!
Man 2: Yep, that's that same silver Infinity! Come on!
Man 3: Come on, y'all!

That's when I left. You know, about my mama not raisin' no fool and all.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 254 - IJS

When I hear
No offense
I know an offense
Is coming

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 253 - Easy. Like. Sunday.

Tell me what you are
Tell me who sent you
Talk to me easy like that
About grandmothers and gods
Let's have donuts and bake bread
Play like before
Walk with sand simple in water
Let's listen to quiet
Write bad poetry together
Make up songs like we did

Jaha Zainabu Photography - Rodzilla


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 252 - Check in

It is not love I am afraid of again
It is whether I will journey
The day by day
The again again
Again

Jaha Zainabu Photography


Monday, September 9, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 251 - A text to Friend

How are you is such a cheap question
Only three words
It doesn't deman a thorough search of the soul
It only asks you barely scrape the level
That's my job, I guess
To find words to ask about your spirit
Your laugh
Your heavy
Your shine
Today

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Bedtime

Tonight I am going to bed reading Bethsheba A. Rem's book LONG STORY SHORT. It is so good. I miss Sheba and her stories. Her real life stories are ENOUGH, the book is even EXTRA. I am proud to say that the cover of the book is artwork done by me (yaaayyy). I've had the book for some time now and it's really been sitting on the shelf. I don't know what happened but something said, Hey, read Sheba's book tonight. Read it. And I listened.

In other news, Uraeus and I were in the store this afternoon. We were in line together laughing and talking. Clearly we were together. A woman behind us, who had on the worst blue I just got out of church suit and hat ever was behind us. She tapped him on the shoulder and asked him how old he was. He responded and she went on to ask him if he wanted to be in an all male fashion show. Um, hello!!! What the what? He said he wasn't interested and we left. But I was like, Sis, there was a better way to handle that. In these Stranger/Danger times you don't offer a minor a job (even if it is in your church's fashion show) and not talk to the parent(s)/guardian(s). Where they do that at? And I was right there! That's the thing!

I'm just free writing people. You know how I do. Yes, when you are free writing you can jump from what you are reading to an irritating person in line behind you because you get to say. Also, in a free write, please let it be known that "in other news" is an appropriate enough transition.

In other news, good night.

Photo by Holland-Reid Photography


A poem a day for 2013 - day 250 - Freedom

I am bored with the old stories about what who did to me
I am over my victimhood
And yours too

Gratitude

I am thankful this day for voice
For my voice
For using my voice as expression
As art
As love
I am thankful for waking up
For my son
For watching him rest
For the heat
For friends
I am thankful for family
For love
I am thankful for safety
Patience
Peace

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Just because

Yep.

New script

Because I am open to love and love is all around me.

A poem a day for 2013 - day 249 - Days. Hours. Time.

These are the moments
The ones easy and ever
The ones simple to be remembered
My son's long limbs dangling past the edge of the sofa
The television
Rest
Heat
This summer heat
Laughter and friends
Conversation
About tomorow
About all those tomorrows to come
This is the now
These moments
To love
To cherish
Just because

Friday, September 6, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 248 - Now

Today's poem of the day comes from a Facebook conversation I had with Karyn Carlo (whom I lovingly call, Karyn Carlo for president - but that's another blog post).

I posted this:
Dear churches, thank you for inviting me to perform at your (insert anniversary of something here). I really appreciate it. Here's the thing. I can no longer do this if your minister is just going to get up after me and preach hate. I just cannot. The good thing for you though, is that there are tons of poets who believe in the same kind of hate that you do. It sucks for me though.
Then I explained that my real frustration was with myself for not being as outspoken as I would have liked to have been in certain situations and that I felt guilt for receiving money/praise from institutions that promoted hate speech I speak against. 

She then asked me what I would say now. To which I responded (with a few lines edited) this: 


We are all expressions of Source, Most, One, Creation, God
We are nothing without each other
His sin is not worse than hers, mine
What we spread and teach as sin is not how God sees sin 
It is shameful that I as a woman with only a high school degree 
Cannot walk into a kindergarten classroom and teach the alphabet 
But anyone can declare being called by God 
Then stand before a congregation and teach
Passed down poorly interpreted lies and hate
WAKE UP!

Birthday update

I had a super amazing, impromptu birthday celebration on my birthday last Tuesday. I haven't updated yet, because I have been getting some awesome sleep at night and have been working throughout the day.

This will be brief. I think.

Went to The Serving Spoon in Inglewood with family and friends for breakfast.
Friends had the great idea that we would get tattoos.
They chipped in and I was the only one to get tattooed. I love it. I really do!
Ate with Nspire at her place. She was with me all day.
Went to see The Butler with Nspire.
Went to Flight School (poetry spot) in Culver City.
Sometime around 2 am I got home.

And slept soundly.

Us

I had a refreshing conversation last night with Therman. Refreshing is not the word. A more appropriate word will come to me later. A conversation about the people of Syria. That's why I used refreshing in the first place. Because we, and by we I mean the people on the news and social media, keep referring to Syria like it's the old school game Battleship. Are we going to bomb them? Yes, bomb them! No, don't bomb them! Chemical warfare? Chemical warfare! Kill them! Don't kill them! We talked about them as people. They have faces. They have names. They have real worries about real life life or death. Where are these pictures? They are nowhere for us to see. You know why? Because it is easier to flip a coin and kill or not kill game pieces in some far away land than it is to look into cried out eyes of men and women. Of boys and girls. Of babies and elders. We have lost our minds. Our rogue, twisted, made up minds. Our dangerous, forgetful minds.  I had a disappointing conversation with Therman yesterday. About Syria. About humanity. About us (U.S.).

Thursday, September 5, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 247 - Syria. Revolution. Leaving.

These are people
Human beings like you
Like me
On foot
With clothes with food
With lives on their backs
With fear and faith
With the little bit of understanding there is left in the world
Leaving their homes
Because we might or might not
But probably will
Destroy land
Erase memories
Take freedom away

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 246 - Terrain

There is a way he knows me beautifully
How he leans into me with the sweetests of secrets
I will be daisy if he asks me to
I will wait right here outside the shade
Because he is worth the sweat that will fall
From my patience
I will remember
I will remember mouths and ears
I will remember feet and thighs
Remember sweat and water and towels
I remember the best laughter
Touch
Kiss
Fingers
Everywhere fingers
And long drives through dark places
I will afraid with you
Getting lost with you
Was the safest found I remember

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 245 - Celebration



I am moved today
Beyond what words there are
For me to say
I am loved so profoundly
So fingers and arms
Lasso all the love right into me

Monday, September 2, 2013

A poem a day for 2013 - day 244 - Night before

Tonight is the eve of my birthday
The day I was born
I was born
I was given a name and a life
I was given feet and wings
I am fly
I am clouds and words
I am so many words
I am journals and folders
Sticky notes
I am ideas for the next American novel
About a brown girl with struggles and dreams
Who leaps tall predators and racist employers
I am every flower I wanted for my bookshelf but didn't have the money for
I was born
I was given a life
I was given a mic and a stage
An audience a bright light
I was given emotions and heart
Emotions authentic raw ready
Are you ready
I have searched myself
All this human being I have become
All this woman I have fit myself into
All this kiss I have for you and for me
All this love I have to fall into
I was given life
Heart
Art
Words
Play
Love
Look at all this be
I have become

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Photo by Holland-Reid Photography


A poem a day for 2013 - day 243 - Wave inspired

"The world treats curly haired children differently" Thea Monyee

The world will not save place in line
Will not accuse a curly haired brown boy as fast as one
Whose hair curls tight enough to be called course
Girls with nappy kitchens are not called exotic
We prove our worth with what we know
We are smart girls
We are cool
We tell jokes
We learn to swim in college
Boys were not taught to choose us first
We learn to value ourselves
Ourselves
We learn to pass this love down
Like scripture

Welcome here

My friends Shihan and Elsie had their baby tonight and they get my award for the most awesome baby name I've heard in at least ten years, which is...wait for it...wait for it...EVER Van Clief. What baby name have you heard recently fresher than Ever? What? Thought so.

Welcome to earth, Ever!