Black Culture Month Part 1

I love Black culture. I love BLACK CULTURE!!! Sorry I just had to say it again because I really do and I love being able to say this. I wanna scream it from the top of my lungs but, that is probably still frowned upon in most places.

Black History Month 2021 has been, without me realizing it, me going out of my way to absorb content by Black content creators. And it’s been a like a warm hug. I’ve read books, watched television, listened to podcasts and music… It really has been a beautiful month. I want to make a few recommendations if you want to live out the rest of BHM as I did. I hope you are enjoying, learning, and consuming a lot this month.

A Love/Hate Thing by Whitney D Grandison was a wonderful surprise. I wasn’t really in the mood for a Highschool romance when I picked it up but, as it got going I couldn’t put it down. Every chance the book could’ve gone with cliches and made characters props or dimensional they didn’t. Things took place over time so you could get neck-deep into the group’s struggles.

The book let me make judgments about the characters only to point the finger at me for making those snap judgments. A lot of the book is about the things we automatically think about others and how we don’t always know their pain. I’ve read a bunch of books since this and I just can’t get it out of my head. I’m pretty sure I’m gonna pick it up again and from me, that’s high praise because I rarely read anything multiple times.

Band’s image from Bandcamp.

Meet Me @ The Altar has kept me a float on the tough days at work. I love the crashing sounds that remind me of my youth but, also have a kind of hopefulness that was missing from that old school Pop punk scene. The band is made of three Black women and it sounds just like the early 2000’s version of Paramore but, with just a litte edge. The song “May the Odds Be in Your Favor” has definitely struck a cord with me and “Garden” sweeps me into a head rocking, feet stomping, angst but, in a good way. I just love seeing my people in a genre that just never felt like was for me, y’know?

One Night in Miami was beautifully acted and written. Just knowing it’s Regina Kings directorial debut has me floored because each scene grips me and holds my attention even with the play aesthetic. Aldis Hodge, Leslie Odom Jr., Kingsley Ben-Adir, and Eli Goree do an amazing job showing  Jim Brown, Sam Cooke, Malcom X, and Cassius Clay at this point in their lives and ultimately their activism. Watching these actors stand not get swallowed up by the dialouge that could move mountains it was a treat.

Official Promotion Poster

Each man has a different viewpoint, and comes from a different place and throught talking (mostly arguing) they begin to see the Black struggle in different ways. Learning from eachother to become better leaders and clear the way for for others. It also shows just how much hasn’t changed from even before the Civil Rights Movement. These men were pioneers and it felt amazing to be a fly on that wall in that room.

Jim Brown’s first scene floored me watching him sit down with a man who sung his praises just for it to end in such a way… It was a cold shower of realization. Aldis Hodge played it perfectly to a letter and got me interested in man I didn’t honestly know that much about. The living man enjoys the film and I don’t want to ever know if this really happened or not. A great perhaps.

There’s a lot more I could say and there’s even more to talk about so I’ll leave this one here and I’m thinking about doing a part two so look out for that. So what else have you all been doing to educate, consume, and create this Black History Month? Checking my blog might be a start but, I hope you are keying into all the culture we have to offer. Good luck, Readers.

All images hold original copyright, no copyright infringement meant.

Uncomfortable

Over the weekend, I did something that made me feel uncomfortable. It scooped my stomach out because I thought it was the right move. I believed that sacrificing my comfort was worth it to make someone else happy. And the worst part is I don’t know if it did.

I wonder sometimes why we do the things we do. Like why do we roll over our gut feelings and instincts to try and make people happy? I mean is it cause it makes us happy? I believe that answer is no. I think the reason we do this is because we can’t stand the tension. I think our fear of even a bit of tension in our lives leads us to do self-destructive things.

I don’t mean things like punching walls or cutting ourselves. Even those are symptoms of a problem built up over time. I mean self-destructive like refusing to apologize or leaving a bad situation. We try so hard to keep that tension inside that it ruptures our insides when if we had released it much earlier it would have been much less a problem than we probably made it out to be.

Now I’m not saying to steam roll over someone else’s feelings but, maybe what you think is a big deal isn’t really a big deal. Maybe you should trust your relationships with those people you care about to bear that bit of tension. Maybe they’ll surpise you by understanding and the people who don’t weren’t worth all that much worry anyway. I know that’s easier said than done, throwing out your bad relationships but, I will tell you that they lift so much weight and anxiety from your shoulders.

So good luck out there dealing with your uncomfortable feelings but, maybe you have a better way of dealing with them then I do. I knew this was probably going to be a lot for me going in and I just didn’t listen to myself. Hopefully, you all are better listeners. Has anything made you uncomfortable recently? Maybe make a comment on this blog, get that feeling out. It’s quiet over here no many people listening but, you and me.

Wren

Wandering,

Wondering,

Wonderland Wren.

Has left the Earth,

And returned again

Waring,

Wearing,

Wrathful Wren

Fears no more

And yields even less

Worrying,

Waiting,

Warm-hearted Wren

No longer will shrink,
Won’t even try

Wading,

Waxing,

Willful Wren

Soars in on wings,

of ambition and desire

Winging,

Wringing,

Witty Wren

Don’t let them catch you

Whatever you do

Wandering,

Wondering,

Wonderland Wren

Has left the Earth,
And returned again.

Is or Was

I have given much thought to the idea that people who leave us, don’t always leave us. Maybe we think about them less; Or morn the people they’d become. But, we don’t forget the things they loved, the ideas they had. We even keep their saved games. So is was, right?

Like green was his favorite color or her smile was as bright as the sun. I want to choose is. I don’t know if that would still be true. If they were still alive maybe they’d be sick of the things they used to love. But, I want to say Green is his favorite color and He has a soft spot for monkey. She was first person to say she liked my hair long and she taught me so many things with a smile that was so filled with the joie de vivre.

All I’m saying is sometimes it feels better to say is instead of was and I’m giving you the power to choose. I’m not super spiritual myself but, think they things they showed us and taught us aren’t gone so maybe that means they aren’t either. I find comfort in being a web of expeirences touched by others. Our lives are passion projects and those people who touch our lives are the florishing sheet that goes over our grand design.

Live well, readers. Maybe meditate on this for a bit. Tell me about your choice: Is or Was and give me a like or check out some of the other things I’ve written.

2020

2020 was interesting. It wasn’t my best year and I had to put a bunch of all the things I wanted on the backburner. I know my book hasn’t come out but, writing was really difficult this year. So I’m just gonna put down some of the good things that have happened to me.

  • I wrote more on here.
  • Got back in touch with a good friend.
  • Made a few decisions that were good to me.
  • Got closer to some people I wouldn’t have guessed in a million years.
  • I found new strength in my own mental health. Deciding if I can work being an essential worker during a pandemic then I can probably make it through some other less impactful things.
  • I went on some dramatic self-emprovement outside and inside.

While it’s not a lot of wins. I think I’ve become a better person and that’s all I think I could have asked for this year. Thank you for following me this far and I hope I can keep giving you reasons to check out my site. I’ve got a few more posts coming out the rest of this week and I want to start 2021 with a bang.

Passenger

The car waits at the intersection way too long

The rhythm of the blinker keeps tick tick ticking

I come to a stop on yellow

And drive just a little too slow

But, it’s all to make the drive go smoothe

Check the mirrors a bit more than is expressly necessary

Don’t honk when that red truck cuts me off

Terrified by the swerving semi

White knuckles on big black hands

But it’s all to make the drive go smoothe

Glancing at you out of the corner of my eye

While streetlights paint your sleeping face

Not even singing when my song comes on

Filling my heart as each mile passes

Whispered “I love you”s under my breath

But it’s all I can do to make the drive go smoothe smoothe.

Self-care

I got my hair done on Tuesday and it feels great. You know that feeling where  you don’t feel like yourself unless you’rein your favorite sweatshirt or jeans or everything just isn’t right until your make up is done? Well that’s me. I love my braids. When I picture myself as a successful person/writer it’s with braids. Maybe it’s weird but, it just makes me feel at home in my own skin. For me having them in is self care.

I have spent a lot of time this year on taking care of myself. Trying to lose a bit of weight, incorporating a skincare routine and, even bought a watch for trying to work through the ADHD time slippage. I want to come out better from this terrible year.

Self-care is so important. I know myself and without it I kind of just subsist in the world. The depression hits and I just spend all day playing games or something just to try to relax. I’m not saying videogames aren’t effective self-care but, I think for me and just the types of games I play there just isn’t always that same sense of accomplishment I get from just making sure I did two face masks this week. I’ve realized besides writing it kind of just makes me feel like I got something done and I am overall better for the ten minutes I took to do it.

I began throwing out a bunch of the old mess in my room leftover from a previous person and donated some clothes too. It’s odd sometimes what throwing a bag of trash out will do for your mind. ( I should probably clean up more often. It’s not gonna happen but, I probably should.) I have been feeling a little freer in this past week and I’m hoping I can keep up the momentum. Keep changing enough small things to make me a stronger more well-rounded person. To me, my self-care is trying to improve minuscule things over and over again to eventually create a chain reaction of positive change.

Essential

I’m going slowly insane. I mean I’m glad I’ve got my job but, the amount of people who don’t seem to care about the pandemic makes me want to pull my hair out. I just don’t know what needs to be done so that people won’t come into my store with their entire families… It all just makes me want to scream. Why don’t they care about being sick?

It’s not enough that they don’t care about themselves but when we walk away because they’re too close they follow us like it’s no big deal. They squeeze in behind us and reach over us like we’re mannequins. I’m so tired of it. If we get infected in a great enough number the store closes.

We had our first confirmed case at the store this week. There’s no telling who could have been infected it’s made a huge change at work. People who were unworried before are now wearing masks and gloves and actually staying away from each other. Things we were always supposed to be doing but, we foolishly thought we were safe.

My friends range from essential to laid off and they’re all worried about me. Somehow that’s not really the attention I like. I feel bad for those that lost their jobs and I feel lucky to have mine but, somehow the apocalypse isn’t great for my mental health. Who would have thought?

Sorry about being late on the book but, you already know the score. Things are looking a bit better for me right now and I think I need this way too much not put my all in. Thanks for being patient I won’t make you guys wait too much longer.

Hunger

She lures me in,

Bright and shy,

I caution myself

Too wary to try,


She bites full lips

And I lick mine.

Her eyes make contact

and dart away.

I follow them

I’m drawn in

Predator and Prey


I slink closer

my body reacts

About to pounce

There’s no turning back

I bite in

Taking what I deserve.

Our bodies tangle

I can’t tell where we begin

This is it!

What I’ve waited for…

Satiation

 

My fly wide

I left myself open

She knew I would

I sink my fangs in

But there is no purchase

Red Tide flows

She lifts me from off my feet

With practiced ease.

I’m on my back

she pins me down

I whimper and beg


I see my reflection

In hungry bright eyes

She lured me in

To my demise

 

Closure

It’s this remarkable word that we almost never get. Things don’t end and tie off in a neat bow. Not like they do in fiction. Everything can work out in books, tv, or movies but, IRL things don’t always end that way. And even when we do get closure and everyone is an adult about everything why does that not ever seem like enough?

Why does even knowing it’s over not change the way you feel? Why doesn’t cutting them out make things better? I guess because you still care, right? You want them to be happy even if that happiness isn’t with you. At least that’s what I want to say. I want most of my exes (ex-friends included) to be happy. I just selfishly want them to miss me too. I don’t know if this is good advice but, maybe if there’s someone you’re curious about (who didn’t leave you hurting or ruin your life) may just check on them. Just tell them you miss them. Just a little bit. Maybe something good will come from it.