To My Father,
To My Father,
don’t I have a resolve?
everytime I try nothing is solved?
everytime I try to make a way
out of no
nothing but grief they make me stray?
I gotta make a way
presuming I get away
the life force drain from me
I just wanna BE free?
This post is going to be a little different from the ones I’ve been posting lately. This is a bit of a thought exercise for me. This is also my chance to clear my mind and connect with you on a deeper level. Ready?
Anxious: I wake up most days in a sweat. Whether it was from a particularly unsettling dream or because of my precarious life, who knows. About once every few hours I worry about money–where I’m getting it, how much my loans are and my impending payments, wondering when my future employer will call me in for an interview, and how to pay for the miscellaneous stuff. When I’m not ruminating on that, I’m worrying about my saint of a partner. If it was not for them, I would most certainly be homeless/couch-surfing. I know all this financial woe is really heavy. My inability to use my undergraduate and graduate degrees to attain full-time employment is only nursing that crushing feeling my partner has to deal with daily. Then I think about my 20 year old car that is hanging by a thread. My phone that is steadily on the brink of ‘no service’. My everyday shoes that have been worn nearly through the sole. All day my mind fluctuates from one constant worry to the next. However, if you saw me you wouldn’t have any idea.
Depressed: Upon waking I get up, use the bathroom, and then get back in bed. My partner works out of town weekly, so I stay home alone and tend to my cats. My day consists of distracting myself with reality television and tv court shows while avoiding checking my email for employment rejections. I sit with my cats and talk with them since I’m sure they know how depressed I am. I look at my sneakers and think about the me I used to be. How lacing those bad boys up and running somehow helped me thrive. Back to bed. After napping for hours, my stomach wakes me with an alert that I need to eat. I go into the pantry, get my can of soup, heat it, then eat it in bed. I can’t be bothered to shower until my partner is expected to return home. I live behind my phone screen.
Stressed: I live in an apartment where the people below me are so loud they might as well live above me. They just got a new puppy, but don’t seem to be giving it as much attention as a puppy needs. So in the background of my day-to-day is a sad sounding puppy that I just want to love on. Also, I am applying to other graduate school programs since the degrees I have aren’t helping me find work and it’s a dream to ultimately become a PhD. With deadlines approaching it is increasingly stressful to look at my writing sample, work on my CV for those who are writing my recommendations, and not to mention my statement of purpose–because I’m still working on securing employment. On top of everything, no matter how much I study, my standardized test scores really just make it harder for me. I am also isolated in the town I live in because of lack of access to income and creativity. When I see my friends getting work, I begin to feel like it must be me.
Motivated: So then I write. I come here and make myself write a poem. I write about what has been on my mind, what has happened in my life, or in reaction to this messed up society. It’s been so hard to do so lately, especially with the chaos and corruption within our governing structures and also in the day-to-day. I made myself write today because I needed to. I have a voice and have been told it is important to use it. I mean, you never know, this might resonate with someone reading–which will make all of this typing more worth it. I’m used to being vulnerable in my poetry and academic prose, so it is quite different doing this thought exercise here and now. I mean, I have a journal.
To My Momma
To my momma,
who has swallowed the amerikan dream
and choked on it.
To my momma,
whose dreams have fought each other–
but cannot bear to see.
A volcano eating its own lava.
To my momma, who couldn’t turn
hell into paradise
and blamed herself.
Who has always seen
reflected in her mirror
an ugly duckling.
To my momma,
who makes no demands of anyone
cause she don’t think she can afford to.
Who thinks her money talks
louder than her womanhood.
To my butchfem momma,
who has always
taken care of business.
Who has never drifted
hazily to sleep
thinking, “he will take care of it.”
Who has schemed so much
she sometimes schemes against herself.
To my sweet, shy momma.
Who is uneasy with people
cause she don’t know how
to be phony,
and is afraid to be real.
Who has longed for sculptured gardens.
Whose potted plant
dies slowly on the window sill.
We have all been infected
with a sickness
that can be traced back
to the auction block.
You must not feel guilty
for what has been done to us.
Only the strong go crazy.
The weak just go along.
And what I thought was cruelty,
I understand was fear
that hands, stronger than yours,
and whiter than yours,
would strangle my young life
Momma, i am proud of you.
I look at you
and see the strength of our people.
I have seen you struggle
in the dark;
the world beating on your back,
dragging your catch
back to our den.
Pulling your pots and pans out
to cook it.
A mop in one hand.
A pencil in the other,
marking up my homework
with your love.
The injured have no blame.
Let it fall on those who injure.
Leave the past behind
where it belongs–
and come with me
I love you mommy
cause you are beautiful,
and I am life that springs from you:
part tree, part weed, part flower.
My roots run deep.
I have been nourished well.
I needed this.
Until Next Time,
August is Black.
What do you do when your stance is apocalyptic?
When the things you say aren’t very analytic?
All you see is the destruction of the planet
But your voice is so muted that all you do is plan for it.
When what you want to do is breathe
but with every breath you begin to heave
and all the things you throw up are parts of your life
yet none of it includes any of your tumult and strife.
No matter how hard to try to make it go away
so that you can support your community it refuses to stray.
All of the death, decay, and chaos going on in many forms
nothing you do or think isn’t laced in forlorn.
And you know you’re not alone
and eventhough your breaths have been granted
it is your stance that you bemoan
as the poisonous seeds of decay have already been planted.
Written by me | 8.31.17
There’s so much to say about everything that has been happening around us all over the planet. Try to keep connected to your communities and support in any way you can those devastated by natural disasters and also by man-made disasters. We are the ones who keep us safe.
Until next time,
I am not
your excuse to harm
while claiming you’re unarmed
I’m not the one
you’re about to place your blame upon
your grimy sinew that connects your con.
I’ll tell you what:
You might have deceived me at the very beginning.
Not wanting to proceed with caution
and now I’m over here ending
a bond that was based in inequity
a bond where only YOU were free.
Severing a connection that was truly one-sided
that because of my brown skin and my Queer ass-
-was one that you prided.
You saw my emptiness and used it as fuel
to help yourself heal,
get free meals,
and used me as your fool.
Your silence is my evidence,
your shadiness built my resolve.
The fact that you had nothing to say to me
spoke loudest of all.
I refuse to shed tears for you
instead I cry for me
and the pain that I endured in order to be freed
from a person who ain’t know how to nurture something healthy
someone who instead fed it their long-standing history
of toxic and viral white feminist fragility
sprinkling in my Queer Black ass in hopes of achieving intersectionality–
That’s why I had to get from underneath your spell
and now that I am out of it
my hindsight had me truly compelled
to write you out of my world today
but were you ever really in it?
Or was I some sort of tool for you to remain complicit?
Written by me | 7.31.17
Finding love seems easy, but having a healthy means of conveyance is the hardest part. I hope you let my experience show that we all are struggling to find our heart’s content, so try not to be deceived by a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Until Next Time,
You ever feel like
The feeling of of confinement has you
to flee to any other place but here
It’s Pride month–for whom?
Cause I know that I fear
for my life
and my love
and my hope
and my loins,
and my gut seems to have
in a steadfast race to ‘who-will-die-first?’
Why am I to feel safe
in a world where I’m cursed?
Walkin’ down the streets knowing I’ve been marked
knowing that on top of that
I don’t know where to start
But if I don’t choose one
I will succumb to my writhing.
Written by Me | June 30, 2017.
I hope that all my queer family has had an eventful Pride month, and hope that y’all were able to avoid all the corporate BS that has co-opted it.
Until next time,