Strength

Blackness is not a thing that is easy

It builds you

Brick by brick

Bricks hurled at windows and cars and sculls and arms

The same arms that will pick up those bricks

Slather them in mortar and add them to the strength that is our being

We all wear it differently

Own it differently

This blackness

But its there

In our blood and our bones

To be black is to know a sorrow so deep it stems from a place that has no end

No true beginning

Just pulls us forward

It’s fire that burns beneath our skin

Lighting us up

Running like lava through our veins

A constant promise

An ever waiting truth

Small Talk

It’s an interesting feeling. Learning you’ve spent months falling for someone who could actually have never loved you back. One of those, “huh.” moments.

I’m over here feeling myself out, talking to my emotions like,

“Yo… are we good? Cuz I feel fine. But I don’t want you coming back here in like, six months messing my shit all up. Talking about ‘missing them’ or ‘broken hearts’ or whatever. Like, I’m feeling good…so…we good?”

And it feels like they’re just looking at me like,

“Yeah. Ok. Have you MET us? Good luck kiddo.”

On being black in white spaces

It eats at you, little by little
Tries to peel you open and gnaw at the core of what makes you human

Tries to gnaw at the core of what makes you magic

What makes you sing from that space of history and ancestry and truth

That feeling that makes your body hum as music rises up from your gut, around your heart and out your soulful lips

You sing to elevate the spirit and carry the soul to the heights it was formed to go

You let your blackness radiate in heavy, shining waves around you

Deterring anyone who might think to tear you down, who might think to make you feel small

Sometimes you falter

Sometimes you get afraid. You get tired

You let them tear at you, peel you open

Grab your guts and show them to you. Like they weren’t just ripped out from your own stomach

And then you wake up, you come to

You get hugged by a tall woman with long, dark twists that graze lazily across her back, skin smooth and the color of chestnuts

She holds you to her chest and whispers that you are a god, you are powerful

You are magic

She reminds you to shine, to burn bright

She reminds you that you need radical love, and radical honesty

She reminds you that fire hums in the pit of your stomach

You remember that you forgot to love yourself, appreciate yourself

Trust yourself.

You remember what it feels like to blaze

Blood Letting

Lets talk about 

Blackness and 

Blood and 

How often they go 

hand in hand

Blood being shed 

in streets

Blood being spilled 

at birth

blood being let 

in sorrow

Blood though, 

Our blood 

Is the oil that fuels 

Blackness 

Holds our magic

And it courses 

Through us 

Setting off eruptions 

As it goes 

The Vessel

Mohammed.
Resolute.
Strong.

I look into his deep, soul-ful
Eyes and marvel at the
Tales they hold.

Stories he whispers in furtive
Glances and guarded words.

They are stories I alone can hear
Wading in this sea of white.

This sea crashes and churns, and
My ship struggles to remain afloat,

His vessel remains undaunted – unbroken
Miles and miles it has traveled in this white sea.

I consider my ship, small and
Teetering.  Boards loose and breaking

It is not at all equipped for the journey on which it has embarked.
Mohammed’s vessel is strong,

It is armed and yes, it has some insecurities,
But it can make it to the end.

Before I begin the precarious journey home,
I bid him farewell, sounding my Horn in celebration of him.

Then slowly, I begin my return trek,                                                             This boat was made for shallow waters.

It is time for a new vessel.