|Graphics done by The AIDG. Photos done by TheBeautifulStruggle(NYC) & Cheria Caldwell & jY. Gifts given by God.|
I can’t make you love me
If you don’t
You can’t make your heart feel
Something it won’t………………..
So truth….it doesn’t matter what kind of beautiful black and proud woman I proclaim to be….it doesn’t matter how awesome of a writer I may be or how great my show’s turn out was…..it doesn’t matter how good I cook in the kitchen, and I do cook goooooood……but that doesn’t matter…..the size of my bedroom, the amount of shoes in my closet room or the thickness of my thighs and how sexy they might look in a summer dress does not matter….
When its all said and done
I can’t make you love me if you don’t.
I can’t force feed myself to turn interesting in your eyes, I can’t make the clock speed up to a possibility….all I can do is accept reality and figure out a way to deal with it. Reciprocity has alluded me most of my life in many different situations. Its not secret that I have a mild obsession with love and obtaining and holding onto a feeling that is almost overpowering but in a healthy way….but i can’t share my mind or my heart with someone who does not want it…..
And even if he does
I can’t make that be ENOUGH for me…..
Ain’t I so much better than a tape dispenser……a faux mechanical flower in a breakable flower pot that doesn’t even come with the batteries so I can see how it works ???? Ain’t I better than love that isn’t really there ???? Course-ran love ??? Haven’t I finally, after all of this time, bloomed into a least somewhat of the woman that I want to be and that is just enough, if not more, for the perfect imperfect opposite to my cold bed ??? Surely I jest…….
But I can’t make that be.
In one of my new poems, I wrote about loneliness and how my biggest problem with it is that I can’t make it go away at my beckoning call……I can’t just twitch my bewitch nose and watch Prince Michael or Tall Larry or Thick Anthony come barreling thru the door with an arm full of hugs and a fistful of kisses……that is the problem with being lonely….its not that I don’t like to be alone…I love it…..but it’s the fact that sharing space with someone who makes me feel more alone than I would be if I really were [alone], makes loneliness feel like a car accident …..of which the car is about to blow
And I’m stuck behind the wheel
Legs immobile, door locked and waiting ….
Just waiting on the end to happen.
I can’t make you love me……
I can only be me, do me and see me for what I am worth….and if I know anything about any ounce of my worth, then I know I am worth more than a Walgreen’s thought….
I don’t have a broken heart
I have a numb heart
My ex, who somehow still manages to keep up with my number (thanks mommy) called from Jail to apologize FINALLY, for all the things that happened…..we were both guilty of a lot of shit….in a perfect world, I would have apologized to him too for my part…..look here, I used to threw them bows, do you hear me ???? I mean ,I would let off an eye shot with the right push of the wrong button, I didn’t have no shame……
Until the fight was over…..and the reality of how I looked and/or felt set in.
But I digress…..the least of our worries were physical fighting….
Or maybe some of it I just don’t even remember….when I read the journal from that era, I am greeted with shit I must have put in my repressed memory file… *shrug *
But he apologized…..for the first time….its been almost ten years ago…..a tumultuous four years of my life that ended with a broken woman who had NO IDEA who the hell she was…..she wasn’t Butter no more…..and hadn’t really nurtured Kendria……nsaychable was still forming outside for the world to see, but imagine the lost individual inside of me…i accepted his apology because i had forgiven him years ago....his karma is whooping that ass right now and there is nothing i could say, do or wish that would be colder revenge, although i'm not vengeful and i actually feel sorry for him.…want to know something honest??? The first dude I dated after that ex,..i remember he wouldn’t answer the phone one day……
And then the next
And then I started leaving messages…..and couldn’t stop….i went from hurt to angry to hurt to angry….this little fucktard was barely the same height as me and had the audacity to act like he was the shit…..and I was too vulnerable to think otherwise…..i begged him to just call me back over his voicemail…..you know what he did ????
He let a mutual friend, who I had known much longer than him ( I think they were cousins or some silly shit….small indy town shit) listen to all of those messages……all of my business, my vulnerabilities out there for what felt like the world to listen to….me begging ???? A short fucktard of a nigga ????? Kiss and tell bitch ass shit is what it was but the embarrassment set me straight and I realized I was setting a bad example for my reflection, so that relationshit ended.
You can’t make someone see the beautiful you…..the internal light that you hold or the torch that you carry means little if reciprocity is something that cannot be reached…..sometimes the common denominator is too damned divisible and suddenly the numbers become different
Or there is some hanger on, clinging to the cliff of your fraction yet somehow considering itself a whole number…..sometimes…..
It just aint meant to be…..
And I can’t make you love me, if indeed you don’t.
Aint I better than a tape dispenser…..???
Aint I better than some sticky shit that depending on what you are trying to bond together, may or may not do the job correctly???? Scotch tape ????
Aint I better than Scotch ??? Couldn’t I at least have the strength of Duct Tape ??? LOL
I can’t make you see me
I can’t make you be the poem in my eyes or to receive all that is me…..and I am by far no one’s perfection princess but oh yeah, I am so much more and better than what I have been and what I used to be…..and as the world around me moves ….
In rapid, constant motion…..
It becomes more and more clear to me that sticking around for the wrapping to loosen because the tape is too thin, is just not what I was meant for.
Experiencing a new crush will do that to you…
you will either get crushed
crush a lot together…..
you will either get crushed
crush a lot together…..
But for me, in this case, just the simple reminder of what it feels like to be smitten with someone, even if only briefly and un-acted upon, is a smooth groove remembrance of how fun and flirtatiously aware that can make you.....its a fun thing....i'll take an unanswered flirt over a lifelong confusing pattern of back back, forth and back anyday!
aint i better than a ten dollar dispenser ???
and no matter how high the heel,
aint i better than a ten dollar dispenser ???
and no matter how high the heel,
If what keeps us together
Is only Scotch tape
Then we are bound to drizzown. LMAO! I had to say that.
Nope…I can’t make you love me….i can’t even make you be interested in me…..but I can make myself disappear from your peripheral views…..and I can easily become a memory…..and if history shows me correctly, there will likely come a time where one realizes the mistakes made on their part and wonders if the puzzle is still sitting on the table, waiting for them to come put the appropriate pieces in the right places…..but here at this table of fractions, whole numbers and mutual possibilities,
There is no puzzle…..
There is only rhythm
The rhythm is the bass
And the bass is the treble
And I aint got time for nothing or no one that doesn’t make me want to bob my head. #ShotsFired #DoubleEnten
Now….i need a feel up on pump 2. ;)
Let me tell you a story about a little girl in a house on a hill who decided to answer the calling of something she’d never done before:
*****Hosting is not something I have ever put much thought into. Actually, I did host part of a show me and a friend of mine did at Write On some years ago…..the show was called Black Hollywood and I played host for all of about ten minutes……it was so outside my comfort zone that when I got on stage, as host, I felt like crickets were going off in my head…..i had NO IDEA what to say or how to proceed, so I generically said a couple non-funny jokes and immediately called the next person up and decided that would be my only attempt at hosting….FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I’m a writer. And sometimes I perform poetry…..but hosting….yeah, I aint nobody’s dangon host. Leave that for the professionals.
^^^^Its like I could hear those words as I was exiting the yin yang stage.
***Fast forward some years and I was approached by two women who for whatever reason thought it a good idea to ask me to host a spot they had come up with. I reluctantly said yeah, not knowing what in the world to expect. And within two weeks, I started hosting.
***Fast forward ten months. ….as we count down to (a total of 6 shows until) our year anniversary, I had to take a moment to reflect on the last ten months I have spent enjoying/complaining and loving every moment of hosting….it has been one helluva experience, I will tell you that. ….. since I had no expectations out the gate, it became a situation where I took creative control and said “Ok Ken, you have a venue and an opp to do whatever you want…..do it!!!”
And the story is written…..i can only hope that DPoM goes up in history as a goooooood spot….not for my name….my name will be written in the perfect stone just the way it should be. Hosting for me, is not about my name….its not about claiming fame or coming up with fancy events so that ppl can say Januarie York is the shit…..truth is, as much as I care about what people think, I don’t. I care because any real person with a sense of drive and ambition knows that to a certain degree, it absolutely DOES matter what other people think. But the rebellious Aquarian within me does not care whether or not a person thinks/thought I have done a good job. I don’t care if you say jY is a dope poet, or jY puts together great events……because what I am is a good writer. I will embrace that. I am a big dreamer…..and my dreams come true with great help from other people. Nothing I do comes easy and nothing I do is done alone. As I started outlining 2012 (for tax purposes) last night, I couldn’t help but smile at the successes, win/lose/draw, of DPoM…….i have a team of strong black women on each of my sides and together, the three of us laid out an initial vision to be DIFFERENT and to create an environment that was welcoming to all people, of all races. Everything we’ve done has been open to the public to partake in, directly or indirectly. What we have wanted more than anything was to create an environment of unified energies having a good ass time on a early week work night. And I think these last ten months have done a good job of all of that.
I mean this from my heart, when I look out into the audience and see smiles or looks that show someone is thinking or relating to what is being said…..when I hear the audience talking back, when the room goes dead silent and when the people are chanting fuck it, feel it together, there is a spirit that comes over me that is almost unable to be described. I only wish life was as good as those moments ALL THE TIME…..i could almost say I live for every other Tuesday night. But with hosting, comes a lot. To whom much is given, much is required.
Fast Forward to the trials*:
With hosting comes responsibility. Having tried my hand at this for the last ten months, and I am by far full of no one’s seniority, I have been able to see a different side of poetry. Hosting has given me empathy for situations hosts sometimes end up in; where as the artist in me might not have understood so easily. I have dropped the ball as a host a few different times. I have failed to promote correctly, I have made flyers late, I have forgot tip buckets and more. I have done my fair share of ball dropping as a host, so I have come to have not only a greater understanding of this position, but also a newfound respect for hosts……
Some just don’t give a fuck. They don’t try, they don’t care and it’s an anything goes situation. I have been fortunate to not have worked hands on with many of those types of hosts, but if this were an honest blog, which it is, I would admit that those kinds do exist. And for those, I don’t have empathy or understand for. You know why????
Because I’m just a different kind of person. I think there is a way to make shit right if & when it goes wrong and if you choose to do nothing, then I can’t empathize w/that because I CANNOT understand it.
*Fast forward to Responsibility.*
With hosting comes a level of responsibility that if you don’t know what all it entails, you will surely learn thru trial and error, as I have, depending on how long you continue to do it. As hosts, we are charged with unspoken responsibilities to keep our people happy. Who are our people???
*anyone I didn’t mention who is in the building
It is our job to keep the crowd engaged, to entertain in between poets, to see to it that our features for the evening are in the city, well taken care of and ready to perform. We have to market, we have to shop, we have to be accommodating. Hosting does not equal “I get to do a lot of poems” …..sometimes, I don’t even think about doing a poem because I’m so engulfed in whatever is going on around me. Passing the bucket, making sure people are putting in (not taking out), making sure the people of the night are paid, making sure the audience is listening, making sure if someone wants on the list, they make it if there is time…..its a very “accommodating” job.
And then there are the finances. …..#TheScaryBeautiful.
As I mentioned, I forgot to pass the tip bucket for a feature from out of town…..This is when the “host” in me leaves and the artist/human in me reminds herself to get it together dammit……I ain’t gonna lie….i stressed myself out for the next two months about it….you know why??? Because I told my feature that I would make up the difference out of my own pocket……not because I wanted him to go back spread the good word that “if jY forgets your tip bucket, she will cover it” …..but because I am an artist…..and a human. I have worked as a full time, part time & featured poet before…. so there is no excuse available for me to say “I don’t understand where they are coming from” in regards to wanting that tip $$…..we as artists, esp as full time artist, COUNT on all possibilities of $$$ …..the longer we are in the business, we know what is feasible to “count” and what could go “either way”……we know not to count on a certain amount in the tip bucket, but we also know that if the venue says they are “passing it” that we can expect SOMETHING. I would say I start off with $30, depending on the crowd…in my head, as an artist featuring, I might consider myself able to collect $30, give or take a few ends and again, depending on the crowd size (and how the show itself goes). I figure if I expect low, it won’t be a bad thing if I look up and its $60 bucks in there….but if I expect $60 and I end up w/$25, I might be up shit creek….at least thinking-wise. Lol…..so I stay low. But that’s just me….But the point is, we count that money…….poets don’t hit the pavement featuring around so they can take the money and go buy shoes and shit. I can count on my hand how many shoes I have bought with poetry funds…. 0_o Which could contribute as to why I don’t want to be a full time poet…..LMAO!
But featuring poets are counting on the money they are promised….they are counting on the tip bucket being passed if that’s what you said as well as CD/book/Merch Sales, at least to some degree……so it almost goes like an arithmetic poetic equation: x+y+1/2 + 50=$$ + merchX-CostOfTravelZ.
Yeah its like that. When we go out somewhere, we are COUNTING on a whole figure when we leave that may not be exactly what we predict, but we hope it will come very close to it. So when we leave and part of that equation turns to negative zero, we leave out in a deficit, no matter what we ended up with. Why the deficit ? Did we self-sabotage by expecting too much?
Well the deficit is because we were expecting to have “around about” X amount of dollars. Did we self sabotage by thinking this way ??? NO…..this is survival of the fittest. When you are full time, you are paying bills, making it to the next stop and eating off of what you do. Imagine if you are traveling out of town ??? Do you have somewhere to stay ? Do you have gas money ? How are you traveling ? Who paid for your travel ? The list of check off questions can go on and on, so rewinding back to me promising to recover those lost tip dollars for my much deserving feature, it was the RIGHT thing to do. I have a job. I might end up taking a loss, I might end up needing to figure out how to stay afloat from the missing money from my check, but at the end of the day, if I am in the wrong, I have to make it right. So that lack of tip bucket passing, became my new bill. A bill that I didn’t get to pay until 30+ days and three checks later. But I paid it and prayed that it came right on time for him. It was my hosting responsibility to correct that mistake on my behalf. It wasn’t the people’s fault who brought me as a host…it wasn’t the venue….it wasn’t the audience or the DJ’s fault and it surely wasn’t the poet’s fault. It was my mistake, my correction and while the correction took a minute to make good on, I tried to stay in touch with him to let him know he wasn’t forgotten but not “So in touch” that I kept making faulty excuses that would fall thru. The problem with over-communicating is sometimes you try so hard and so much that you think (or hope) that you can make something work by a certain day and it turns out impossible. So I tried to keep distance and stay close at the same time until the issue was resolved.
I say that story for reason. Not in attempts to tip my hat or to down anyone but possibly to make my fellow hosts question their actions:
Again, we have a responsibility that sometimes we don’t sign up for. A responsibility that sometimes we may not want or that will cause interference with our regular, non-hosting lives……you think I didn’t need that money I sent him ??? Mannnn I missed it as soon as it was gone…….but that’s been months ago AND I never went below water. I’m still breathing. I made it thru that and possibly kept my hosting rep in some kind of decent order. And that is the for real point of this blog.
Fast forward to final thought:
We as hosts have to operate in a different mindset sometimes that we were not necessarily signing up for when we said “I wanna host or I’m gonna do this”. Maybe this blog will shine light into the silent job of hosting and give someone something to think about if they are considering it. Its not meant to turn anyone away from the job or make anyone fearsome of hosting. I honestly can’t think of anything I’d rather do every other Tuesday (but not more than that, shit…lololol) other than hosting. I have a great team behind me, a cute DJ w/dimples and a black owned venue. My audience is live, they let me ramble about everything from my dogs to my mom and overall and we support each other….which does not equate to asses in chairs, for me. ….in my mind, supporting me is as simple as telling someone about us. ….sharing a flyer…..coming out….staying late, leaving early, dropping off someone…..man the list goes on. I am proud. I am ecstatic and I am happy to have been asked to be apart of something this beautiful and inspiring. I have been inspired and amazed in more ways than I can count in the last 10 months.
As we approach our first year anniversary, with the next six shows already accounted for, I tip my hat, at all of us hosts out here doing our jobs……our unspoken jobs that are not always patted on the back……people don’t always come up to us and say “thank you for doing that” …..folks don’t always look at you and be like “do you need some help???” …….and that is ok….i am NOT complaining about that. ….a lot of the times, folks have no idea what all hosting REALLY entails….What I AM saying is sometimes hosting is a thankful thankless job. Sometimes we are tasked with shit we weren’t expecting. Sometimes we drop the ball. Sometimes we go overboard and sometimes we don’t go in deep enough. But if your HEART is in the right place and you align your head up w/your heart, you will succeed….in whatever you do but in this case, hosting : )
You will leave a legacy.
You will trailblaze and start new traditions. Hosting, in my opinion, is a stressful, fun job that allows creativity to BLOOM in full…..take advantage of it. Love it. Embrace it all. But most importantly, take care of your people. Take care of your features. If you have to take an L in order to make sure your rep is intact or that your featured artists leave out happy and WILLING TO RETURN, then so be it. Sometime’s that L is finances….sometimes you have to take it out your pay for the night, out of your paycheck for two weeks or hell, out of your Bill Me Later thru paypal. But that dedication to the arts will be rewarded. Have the faith in yourself and your people and your God that it will all work out for the good. Don’t leave your people out here in the dark.
Don’t leave them clueless and don’t leave them mad.
You will end up on the receiving end of a poem that you will likely fall in love with……
………………and won’t even know its about you.
So if you are a host
And have not already done so
Its time to Fast Forward to giving a fuck.
With love to us all,
Where does one begin when they have never met the person they are writing to ??? I don’t know you….i know you even less than I knew Will Da Real One, but we all have something very dear and special to us that brings us together, even in spirits: Poetry.
Poetry is an amazing thing. Writing is a powerful source of redefinement (word I made up) …..we become equipped with the ability to define ourselves, repeatedly, in many different ways, when we write. We are able to soar above the plains, we can touch clouds and exist deep within the pits of the ocean…..as if we were chilling on one of the benches that have been relaxing for decades on the floor of the different seas. …..writing gives us abilities that sometimes we long for in real life.......writing gives us the answers to the questions that haunt us in the daytime, writing gives us the freedom we seek in the dark and writing gives us the right…..
What right ???
All of them…..writing IS our constitution and poetry is but a small yet extremely powerful piece of the commandments our God set in forth for us in the name of eccentric thinking and ink.….poetry is the ability to pen a lifetime in short stanza’s that regardless what they look like on page, all have the ability to impact not just others, but our own selves. I know I am not the only performing poet out here who has penned a poem so powerful to myself, that in the midst of performing it, I can feel life leaving my lips and re-inserting itself in my body…….poetry is our answer. Poetry is our right. It is our Write….it is our life.
Writing is our saving grace.
But sometimes, no matter what the word count, no matter how powerful or impactful the poem and no matter what the resume looks like, writing poems can’t stop fate. Even though sometimes, on that stage, we believe that we have the key to save our lives right there in our notebooks…..so we read sometimes and others we study until it is memorized so that we can make direct eye contact and ask God to direct our pupils to the person or people that need to hear and believe what we say the most…..only, there is rarely a mirror in front of the stage….unless you are one of those ego-driven artists who no matter what, can only see your reflection….but even those people are just as vunerable and needy as the rest of us…..we are all flawed…..but our flaws make for great poems and stories….if only our greatness would save us past the morning we leave earth…..
If only our ink pens had the power to stop bullets
Or if our poems could re-route the anger that stops our hearts….
“what if these poems really are bullets….
And whoever gets hit by them always remembers they were hit….the touch can be in more than place….lives get changed, rearranged or otherwise shifted,
Folks are lifted off the ground”
The poem that, that small word of thought comes from is entitled “Shoot the Messenger”….i wrote it when I first heard about the death of Will Da Real One….a poet who I had seen perform on DPJ and had heard of from youtube clips/BoBRhyme .....a poet, a fellow writer/performing artist, who’s life had been cut short, at the poetry venue, by a bullet. I was so angered when I read this…..
I was hurt, I was enraged and my attitude took on this “how dare you” sort of attitude….how dare someone be so detrimental to life and society as we know it that they would actually kill a poet, at a poetry venue!!!! I felt like the chickens were roosting in the wrong neighborhood….i felt like poets, especially this one as far as I had known, had made great strides towards curbing violence and speaking PEACE in the minds and hearts of not just our children, but our adults too…..those who still need to be reminded that life is a beautiful thing that should be cherished and not taken for granted…..
The fact that his slam team’s name was Black on Black Rhyme and that he was killed in what was likely Black on Black Crime was not just disheartening to me, it truly pissed me off…..so I wrote about a man I never formally met, but who’s death left me numb for the rest of the day…..
And I titled it Shoot the Messenger. ….and the first line, a line that is repeated throughout the piece in hopes of having an answer by the end, is “ What happens when they kill the poet???” ….
Because these poems have all the heart but not enough power to stop a single bullet from wiping out our future ink ramblings…..
Today, as I came into work and trolled around the facebook page that I have remained relatively quiet on for the last few days (sans promoting an upcoming show), I happened to see a picture of about five or six beautiful women, one of which I had met before….idk what attracted me to click on this picture….maybe the tiny bit of caption beneath it that didn’t tell the entire story…..i clicked on it and learned that one of the women in the picture, who’s name was Anita Bee, was no longer here….
She was also a poet……
My curiousity continued as she looked so young, I just had to know what happened to her…..a comment posted claimed to be in disbelief that someone’s life could be so violently taken and immediately my brain started processing bullets…..
By the time I was finished trolling for information on Ms Anita Bee, I had learned that she was a victim of Domestic Violence and her life ultimately had ended in her apartment, a victim of a shooting and that there had been an arrest in the case……
……while others were catching last minute flights and making superbowl party plans, a fellow poet’s family was grieving and bracing themselves for what has to be interpreted as an Early Leave of Life……she was only 28 (?)….and she was a mother…..
And she was beautiful…..
And she was a poet
She was a writer
…..pictures of her in mid-performance told a brief story of a poet living with a secret…..its a hindsight story…..we never see the signs and even if and when we do, what exactly can you say to someone who is in such a situation ???? How do you take control of a woman’s life long enough to get her to safety…..???
And then here’s a curb ball thought:
What if someone is ready to leave but is so scared of what leaving will do, that they stay in hopes of having some type of “control” over the situation ….? Now, let me say, I don’t know Ms. Bee and I don’t know her situation, so these questions have no bearing over her life or death, but they are questions that need asking right ???
I have been there
We all know that just thru my poems and blogs……I could EASILY have been dead today….troll thru this blog and you might find out about one of the many times a gun was held, pointed and directed to my head by my ex….. so when I say I KNOW that feeling, I’m not just guessing…..
A poets life was cut short….
Words on paper never answered for her the questions that were burning in her soul when the curtains closed and no one was there but her and maybe her babygirl….
A bullet tore thru the air and cut off her ink ties to the page…..
A silenced mic sits in a coffee shop open mic wondering when the next time someone will stand in front of it and hope that “the answers” to their personal life’s questions will show face again……
Honestly, I don’t know what exactly I want to say in this blog…..seeing her face, knowing her ending and knowing that when I was celebrating my birthday, she was potentially writing, laughing, holding her babygirl or arguing …or dodging a fist…..or crying ….searching…..all while not knowing that the countdown to her end was on and would soon be over….
She is gone…..Just as is Will Da Real One and probably countless other poets who I don’t know of, have never heard of and even potential world changers who the streets and domestic violence has snatched the souls right out of …..
In this moment, I can’t help but think about April…..a young lady I met at an open mic Indy…..when I originally met her, she was laid out on a floor at a downtown college I was performing at, in the midst of an asthma attack……she would go on to frequent the open mic I frequented and I would always remember her face perched atop the railing on the upstairs portion of the spot…..
Her long her was thick, her skin was light, her voice had a bit of nervousness and her eyes were searching for that mirror….
That relief we all look for when we touch that stage…..
But she would not find it in time to save herself…….soon enough, without any preparation, a fellow poet would knock on my door until I awoke to answer the unannounced visit…..and he would go on to tell me that she was gone…..
She was dead….
She hadn’t been cancer stricken and silent about it….
There was no freak car accident or fall that couldn’t be caught…..
It was a violent death….
A violent morning that would replay in my head over and over and over for years to come….someone who I knew only briefly, but connected with via a Poem Cry and a stage that we shared freedoms on, had gone on to the afterlife and there wasn’t anything either I or she could have written to change that outcome…..
I started feeling a slight bit of guilt because as a woman, how come I didn’t notice ???? How come there wasn’t something in this seemingly sacrificial life of mine that I could have said in random conversation to preserve that beautiful smile that I was lucky enough to witness…..
I can’t help but think about those that have asked themselves the same thing over the last couple of weeks…..New years always scare me…..
I always wonder how many people won’t live to see it thru…..
We poets…..we writers…..we performers…..artists…..
And we write to save ourselves…..but sometimes our own ink, our own thoughts and ramblings and shared verses STILL aren’t enough to save us from our ultimate fate…..sometimes the stage lights are so bright, we can’t see our reflection and minister back to ourselves, and sometimes, we spit so hard and with so much of our soul that we DO speak back to our own selves……
But we don’t tell anyone…..
We don’t share our darksides, our ugly……we share our pain and our past realities, but our present curses are often left on the cutting room floor ….
Until the only thing left to mop up is the blood leftover from our death. ….
Dear Ms Anita Bee,
I can’t say for certainty that our paths would have ever crossed, even with you being as close as Milwaukee……I can’t say that we would have ever shared a mic, a laugh or complimented each other on wordplay, shoes and natural hairstyles……but I can say, you touched lives……in the most simple ways, the most pure ways……
I’m so sorry that you are touching me in the afterlife, but you are not in vain love…..there are so many poets writing poems for you, your memory and the next person & poet that needs it….you are still with us….maybe our poems don’t provide us with the strength in numbers and actions the way we need them too sometimes, but our words never leave….
“legacies can’t be bought out by bullets” ~jY, #SHootTheMessenger
You were a messenger…..and even in death, you are still sending messages…..your pages will live forever….you are infinite….your daughter will grow up and realize her mother made a century wide impact in 28 short years……beautiful Anita, may your soul be at peace…..may Will Da Real One meet you in the afterlife and escort you to the place where the poets go…..
May you breathe again, the easiest you’ve ever breathed, and may that breath be wind against skin of your family and friends and your daughter…..
And may us poets
Who are still here
Realize that we are powerful beings indeed,
But know that our power does not change our fate, our ending story or stop us from the evils of society….and may that statement alone provoke us to LIVE more fluently, speak more, act better, love harder and if ever possible, as much as possible, may we see the invisible mirror that hangs from the rafters…..may the stage lights not be so bright that we can’t minister to ourselves……if each one, teaches one, than may we all be the one plus one…..
And with that said
God bless all of us
Especially us women, who are secretly abused, battered and broken in ways that we become so numb to, that we forget there is a scary life off stage. May the mirrors shine brighter than the lights
May the reflection be louder than the claps
And may we each see ourselves on the receiving ends of our own words....and heal ourselves in the midst of trying to heal and help others.
Be at peace Beautiful.
“If the gift is the curse
And the words meant to uplift do nothing to save our own lives
Will the lives we changed remember us….? ….can those we touched still feel that touch….
Will the poem we were planning on writing that night ever get written….can our spirit rise from our last breath and reincarnate itself into the floating balloon that you never see pop….
Will we be stopped….forever in our tracks, remembered as a statistical victim of black on black…………….”
“…………….What if the poet lives forever…..and the queens stay queens and the messages live on cause the VOICES get louder, to make up for he who has become a flickering sky light…
What if what happens when they kill the poet
I ….along with hundreds of others
Begin to write
Until the poet becomes so powerful in the after life
That he is continuously introduced to new people in the future”