2020 #30

The older I get

The more I begin to see this play out

1 in 4 women and 1 out of 6 men are sexually abused in their lifetime; (Department of Justice) In 8 out of 10 rape cases, the victim knows the attacker; (Department of Justice)

In case you never heard or someone never told you….

Consent is easy

It can be taught to a child

If she’s not into it

It’s not cool

Stop immediately

If she changes her mind

Just stop

No is a full sentence

If you’re at work

Just treat all the women like they are Dwayne Johnson

You’ll be ok.

Consent doesn’t have to be difficult or confusing. It’s really that simple.

And of course this goes for everyone.

I know, you never really know a person.

Or what goes on behind closed doors

I know men get told a lot of what to do and what not to do

But the same goes for women…

Just because he’s aroused doesn’t mean he’s consenting

There’s that confusion even for the victims of all events ——

Just because you’re married doesn’t mean you’re owed anything

You still need consent

And also

If no one ever told you

You don’t have to hook up at work

Or with your boss

Your job can be just that

A job

So you can pay bills

Consent is when you’re both excited about it

Nothing should be a duty

Or a chore

Or a burden

Life is too short for that

So if you’ve never heard

Now you’ve heard

femme érotique

We died here

A thousand times over

In the hunger

The waiting

We both arrived

We see it in each-others eyes

They have terms for her

Cold hard bitch

But she’s a grown ass woman

You get what you see

And that’s what she serves

She knows what she wants

And she goes after it

And when it’s you….

When it’s you

It’s the galaxies edge

It’s figuring out you can breathe under water

She’s a different heat…

She’s sex in heels

——

We don’t ask ourselves about the past

We don’t live there anymore

We are moving forward

——

It’s passion

It’s heat

It’s slow

It’s deep

It’s hunger

It’s her world

I’m just living in it

We’re both here

Everything else fades

There’s a different animal craving

——

We know how much we worked to get where we are….

And right now

That place is

Right here

Exist

I know, what voices cross the waters at Midnight

They keep reminding you

Of old versions of you

They’re there in the corner

———

My chest is flooded

My eyes are on fire

My throat is filled with coal

——-

Exist

Beyond what you were dreaming

All of your enemies already know ….

And these days

Are just a dry county

You’re waking up

———

I know what voices cross the waters

I know you know

But just so….

Keep existing

Keep believing

Keep walking

Your light won’t go out

Your soul is on fire

These are your days

Mute the noise

Photo origin unknown

Hold on

You’re waking up

Put your money where your mouth is

Can you even write a tune

Do you know what it is that you feel?

——

All the soldiers left the post

Ready or not

The new moon is out

The puppet is about to be real

Put your money where your mouth is

Do you know what it is that you bought

Do you do what they spell?

Do you even know what it is that you feel?

——

Hold on

Mute the noise

Main Street is closed

You’re waking up

Don’t be scared

You’re real

Exist above the mainstream

Thank you

For being here

You’re real

2020 #26

She’ll love you, with eyes so bright. You will realise your hunger and your curse. As you walk through this world.

Today they are burning down the streets. The changing of the guards is still incomplete…

And I know, I know, it’s easy once you’ve been burned, to turn your face to the cold and blame your long time family curse, and I know it hurts….

But look around dear, how many of us, really feel anything, anymore around here?

I loved you like the first, I loved you with my best…

She’ll love you, she’ll pull you in…out in the open fields…

You can’t box her in…

She’s anger, she’s fists, she’s fire, she’s all woman…but she breaks so easily…she’s scared of the reality of being…

She changed her mind

And disappeared like smoke

All you can do is hope

She felt your heart next to hers

Now let her go

Turn your face to the sun

And don’t you turn cold

Bleeding Ink #1,477

Some years ask questions

Some years ask for sacrifice

Hold on now, the truth is coming in

——-

Like the tide now,

Some water is deeper

Some hearts are stone

Sunlight is easy

When it’s on her face

Sometimes your city

Burns before your eyes

——-

Some years ask questions

There’s a kid with batteries

He’s playing Star Trek

Red on black

Black on gold

He doesn’t know he’s poor

He just knows he’s happy

When the sun goes down

———

I’ve carried this darkness

Since before my father died

I was there that night

I read his old letters

I cast his demons aside

Some questions get answered

Some you just have to lay down

———

I still see this darkness

I know it will take me

It’s just a matter of when

Some things I won’t understand

But we all are running out of time

I just keep laying words down

——-

They said they found him

With two shotgun shells

Some things are too too heavy

I stood there asking

Was it the darkness

Or was it his heart?

Sometimes you’re happy

And lady

When you smile….

Half of me is sun

Half of me is moon

I learned to live with this darkness

Some days are nightfall

Some days you just have to look for the light

——-

Some years….

Some years

Lady you’re a free girl now

You just keep walking

You’ll make it

A pocketful of questions

A handful of stones that you lay down….

2020 #23

Every work place

Has that one person that is negative

But not really contributing

You quickly learn to ignore them

And continue YOUR path

——

Life is the same,

It’s easy to criticise and throw stones

Tell other people how they should be responding or helping…

But that’s not real activism

I encourage you to look at yourself

To keep the faith

To get in your communities

Listen to stories

Vote VOTE VOTE

Local elections make and break you directly

——

We have hope

There’s a lot of voices right now

Listen to yours

Your gut

We are brothers and sisters

Mothers

Fathers

Lovers

Partners

Neighbours

We are Americans

Us, right here, right now.

Not a building

A church pew

A monument

A name on a building

A flag

But us…

We are citizens and together we are this great country.

It’s what we DO that counts.

We can do better. We can be better.

I’ve heard voices referring to us as masses and generations…de humanizing us.

We are, you are, more than a statistic. A headline. You are valid, you matter.

I’ve heard people call for us to be invaded by some other hero.

No one is going to save us.

If we tear down everything and rebuild

If we rename everything

If we are invaded by another power

This is not the change we need

We would be let down.

——

Take pride

Look in the mirror

Our last family in the Whitehouse

Was the first black Americans to grace it.

Do you not think they thought about the history of that house?

We can do better…

We can not look for some hero to come and save us.

We are, truly, the change we seek.

We must face ourselves and grow.

Keep your hope.

Learn and grow.

This road is not over.

Keep going.

You’re worth it.

We are worth it

We are America.

2020 #22

Dark cloud

Coming up

Thunder rattles

These

Dead bones

But the flesh,just won’t grow ….

——

Hear the voice of god

He’s smoking a cigarette.

Says there’s not much time left

My guardian angel

She says

Some things are too hot to touch

——

These days are numbered

I used to care

But

Feelings change

——

You can win

You can lose

But you can’t can’t change

What won’t bend and what won’t grow

I used to —-

Well ,

You know.

2020 #21

James Baldwin

I keep having dreams that James Baldwin is here. In my kitchen, writing. And smoking. We talk all night. They are very linear. Picking up where the other leaves off. As if he is aware.

Maybe it is…because I will be 31 and I still haven’t found how to deal with 30…

He says it’s because I see him.

I think it is this unsettling feeling I get when I see social media jump. Businesses jump. It’s as if everyone is patting black Americans on the back. Saying “there there.” But still, not seeing them or acknowledging that they exist.

I’ve been reading James Baldwin for years. I couldn’t find his books at my local library so I had to buy them.

I see everyone sharing quotes from him and others…but I doubt they’ve ever read. Really, read their bodies of work.

In my dream. He smiles and asks me how I felt during the early days of the pandemic. When everyone was praising frontline workers.

It didn’t feel authentic. It felt like a mob mentality…

He shrugs. Very well. There you have it.

I think, and I might be wrong.

We are here…dealing with something different.

But, when I step back. And I look at the whole experience of 2020

We have something else here

Racism, yes. Conspiracy theories? No. That’s a very privileged point of view…

As if to say “darling, you’re not having this experience, someone must be trying to destroy America.”

We have no sense of self. We have no boundaries. We are entitled. Selfish. Yes, but we have no real understanding of ourselves.

We’ve been spoon fed this ideal about reality. Profit. But no real understanding.

Yes, you can live a life unlike no other.

But we are still not happy.

We have no sense of self. No boundaries.

when our neighbors house catches on fire we set ours on fire. We don’t understand where we begin and end. Boundaries. Every single week there is something else we are running towards.

Where is the real goal? What will you do if you get what you want?

What do you want?

Black Americans

LGBTQ

The women’s movement

These things are real American lives

They exist

Their experiences are real

Daily

They are more than political movements

They are more than flags

They are not profit agendas

They are humans

American men and women

With families and dreams

The system might be broken

But until we face ourselves

And look in the mirror

And figure out how we got here

And what we are going to do with it

And a real sense of direction

It can’t be fixed.

We are removing the humanity from these movements so we can label them and better handle them.

That is what I fear.

——

I’m tired

I feel like I’ve been gutted

I don’t feel like we are really seeing

I feel like we are just doing just enough

To get by

——

But our actions say something else

——

I’m tired

I’ll be 31 this year

I may be quiet

But I’m not blind

I feel myself retreating into literature

We are better

We can do better

Be better.

I’m going to be 31

And I’m tired.

I feel myself running out of time.

I get up in the middle of the night

And James Baldwin is at my table.