Sunday, August 04, 2013


quiet bend
of earned praise
Heated parades
Sunshine lemonade
the surreptitious serenades
Of august nights

The obsession
With fractured light

A butterfly, born, broken free.

A song

Slipping down the tanned leg
Of a mountain
Feet green with
Canopy stilettos

The loquaciousness
Of cotton candied clouds
As they fall from the sky
Into a blue lime lake

The stillness
Of chaos
Caught in
The chill of
a late day wind

The sizzle of summer on
The skin of the bend
As summer leans forward
To kiss

Monday, July 29, 2013

Missed connection man to woman 2000

Hard heels
She peels
It grates
But it's an earful

He poises
White noise is
Hardcore but cheerful

Missed connection
Before the web expression
saw you at the Cinnabon
Checking your complexion

It was brown skinned
Reminiscent --old hollywood
wrote a letter to the editor
asked to find u
And he "pro'lly would"

Ten syllables
Diligent and elliptical
Brown skin twin
Magically mystical

Before he could chase you with the fever
You had faded into the ether
On the 68 bus you waved
In the back seater

Every now then he peeps ya
in the corner of his eye
that he seen ya

Been about ten
how time flies
But when he hits your street
He still drives by

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

A Rejected Mentor

I looked to you for wisdom
you fed me sour wine
and old bread
You felt it was for my good
For an older woman to train
A young woman
Of such little consequence
Imprudence; well she was woman too
With all her charms
And not a mother
To wayward black girls
Seen as trophies for the guilt
Of the unspoken conquests.
One of course, I could not replace
And my curious faith
Naive and unlearned
Devoid of curiosity
And too firm
Made me the stuff of
Mammies and matriarchs

But even mammy knew
How to pray when
Her own obstinate will
Was defiled

But still, I looked to you.

And if you find this; I wish you well.

Sunday, April 29, 2012


Is it hard being super man
What do you do when you're not
Flying through my mind?
Faster than a speeding
Not now
Breaking into my security system
In the name of romanticism
And heroics
Is it some kind of misfortune
That a formerly reformed
Love addict be blessed with
A real genuine artifact
When I've conditioned myself
To believe in your non existence
Leaving a bit of sunshine
Under my pillow
From a star crossed mind
How is it that I want to drink
You in your thoughts
Wavey and wordless
Pictorials of all the things
I've reminded myself
Are not utilitarian for
Modern love
A fairy tale
Wagging the dog
In real life glass slippers
Are more likely to be crack pipes
Than Stilettos
Hello there
How did you get here?
In the milky white breath of
My left
Telling me
Lovely lingering listless
I'm listening

Free Fall

Who do I blame for
Widening pupils
hungry wooden bowls
I love you's
Feathering of warm thoughts
Plumes of impatience
That condense and float
Suspended by only
Baited breath
I go, you go.
Our small mustard seed
Planted in a holy place
Not a cathedral
But earthy

I shouldn't like you
The way I do
Listening to the cling
Of words
I say

Shhh you reply
Hear it

Feel it
Taste it

The moment before



If I had my way
I would strip you bare
Watch you come unwrapped
Yet remain fully dressed

I would kiss
Those bruises beneath Your
Your charm, and carefree
Anger and doubt

Your disappointments
All the times you tried and tried
On dreams that didn't suit you
Don't you understand that
they never made you,
your mind created
Them to shield yourself from yourself
But can the dreamer ever be less than the dream?

I want to love you
Without your armor
Ice your black eyed
With the coldest kind of kindness
Producing shivers and shakes

I would speak to all silent places
And let the silent places
Sing to me
Tell them the songs
You're afraid to write
So your body writes them for me

So deeply haunting
and achingly beautiful
It hurts to look at you
Hurts more when I'm not touching you
Breathing in the same brainwaves
Deep beautiful lucid waves
Of possibility

Don't speak
Let me look at you
The man behind the velvet curtain
That you think is too broken
To love
Have faith that sometimes
With a a willing heart
Trumps a capable hand

There is a balm in Gilead
knitting one soul to the next
Each breath giving the other
Liquid bone to heal the fractures
And fissures
Of life
Until they become guilded gold
So that neither lacks a thing

Be bare before me
Don't speak
Let your silence
Tell my eyes everything
That my heart has always known

Monday, November 10, 2008

Healing the Great Divide

Years ago, I told my English teacher that I didn't really feel as if I were a real American. I felt as if America was an unfinished promise that had yet to live up to its potential.

She said," Someday you'll change. Travel. You'll see how lucky we are. Look me up in 20 years."

My teacher and I couldn't have been more different. She was a moderate Republican. An older white woman who supported George Bush (Jr.), who believed that African-Americans should rely on the value of hard work and opportunity to succeed. She saw herself as fully American, endowed with inalienable rights of statehood.

I was a young independent, who had not really found any encouragement with any candidate watching as my generation fall to gang violence, war, poverty, apathy and self revile. I too, believe that Blacks, as with all people should rely on the value of hard work, however I knew that reliance would come from faith in the face of tremendous opposition despite opportunity. I also knew everyone doesn't survive that journey.

My teacher and I disagreed on many things, and we didn't part ways amicably for many reasons. But today, after seeing the impossible delivered via the hand of God to America through none other than the hard work, perseverance and prayers of not just my people, but the American people, life has forever changed for me.

I thought about this woman, my former teacher. And this comes to mind: Americans are the most privledged people on the planet, and yet, our union can be perfected.

I wonder what she thought as she watched the scene in Chicago, Biden's grandchildren, Malia and Sasha rejoicing in a city that only forty years before was set ablaze in the wake of King's death. I wonder what she thought of the tears on rainbow faces of the many who had faught for so long that they believed their dream wet with sweat had melted in their hands. I wonder what she thought-- to see people of all races unite on the banks of Virginia, the birthplace to conjoined twins; American slavery, and our modern democracy. And not only that-- to know that forty years to the date of King's death, God has parted the Red Sea again for the prayers of all those who didn't live to see it.

I wonder as she stood there, would she feel as much an American as I, and despite our differences, would we acknowledge our common dream?
If I were to see my teacher today, I would explain what I lacked to words to tell back then: Nobody is more of an American than those for whom the dream was denied, and yet still dreamed.

Transcript: Barack Obama's victory speech
Thursday, 6 November 2008
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President-elect Barack Obama spoke to the world from his home city of Chicago as he became the first black president of the United States. Here is the full text of his victory speech:
"Hello, Chicago.
"If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible, who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.
"It's the answer told by lines that stretched around schools and churches in numbers this nation has never seen, by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for the first time in their lives, because they believed that this time must be different, that their voices could be that difference.
"It's the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled, Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been just a collection of individuals or a collection of red states and blue states.
"We are, and always will be, the United States of America.
"It's the answer that led those who've been told for so long by so many to be cynical and fearful and doubtful about what we can achieve to put their hands on the arc of history and bend it once more toward the hope of a better day.
"It's been a long time coming, but tonight, because of what we did on this date in this election at this defining moment, change has come to America.
"A little bit earlier this evening, I received an extraordinarily gracious call from Senator McCain.
"Senator McCain fought long and hard in this campaign. And he's fought even longer and harder for the country that he loves. He has endured sacrifices for America that most of us cannot begin to imagine. We are better off for the service rendered by this brave and selfless leader.
"I congratulate him; I congratulate Governor (Sarah) Palin for all that they've achieved. And I look forward to working with them to renew this nation's promise in the months ahead.
"I want to thank my partner in this journey, a man who campaigned from his heart, and spoke for the men and women he grew up with on the streets of Scranton and rode with on the train home to Delaware, the vice president-elect of the United States, Joe Biden.
"And I would not be standing here tonight without the unyielding support of my best friend for the last 16 years, the rock of our family, the love of my life, the nation's next first lady Michelle Obama.
"Sasha and Malia I love you both more than you can imagine. And you have earned the new puppy that's coming with us to the new White House.
"And while she's no longer with us, I know my grandmother's watching, along with the family that made me who I am. I miss them tonight. I know that my debt to them is beyond measure.
"To my sister Maya, my sister Alma, all my other brothers and sisters, thank you so much for all the support that you've given me. I am grateful to them.
"And to my campaign manager, David Plouffe, the unsung hero of this campaign, who built the best - the best political campaign, I think, in the history of the United States of America.
"To my chief strategist David Axelrod who's been a partner with me every step of the way. To the best campaign team ever assembled in the history of politics, you made this happen and I am forever grateful for what you've sacrificed to get it done.
"But above all, I will never forget who this victory truly belongs to. It belongs to you. It belongs to you.
"I was never the likeliest candidate for this office.
"We didn't start with much money or many endorsements.
"Our campaign was not hatched in the halls of Washington. It began in the backyards of Des Moines and the living rooms of Concord and the front porches of Charleston.
"It was built by working men and women who dug into what little savings they had to give 5 and 10 and 20 to the cause.
"It grew strength from the young people who rejected the myth of their generation's apathy, who left their homes and their families for jobs that offered little pay and less sleep.
"It drew strength from the not-so-young people who braved the bitter cold and scorching heat to knock on doors of perfect strangers, and from the millions of Americans who volunteered and organised and proved that more than two centuries later a government of the people, by the people, and for the people has not perished from the Earth.
"This is your victory.
"And I know you didn't do this just to win an election. And I know you didn't do it for me.
"You did it because you understand the enormity of the task that lies ahead. For even as we celebrate tonight, we know the challenges that tomorrow will bring are the greatest of our lifetime - two wars, a planet in peril, the worst financial crisis in a century.
"Even as we stand here tonight, we know there are brave Americans waking up in the deserts of Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan to risk their lives for us.
"There are mothers and fathers who will lie awake after the children fall asleep and wonder how they'll make the mortgage or pay their doctors' bills or save enough for their child's college education.
"There's new energy to harness, new jobs to be created, new schools to build, and threats to meet, alliances to repair.
"The road ahead will be long. Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year or even in one term. But, America, I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that we will get there.
"I promise you, we as a people will get there.
"There will be setbacks and false starts. There are many who won't agree with every decision or policy I make as president. And we know the government can't solve every problem.
"But I will always be honest with you about the challenges we face. I will listen to you, especially when we disagree. And, above all, I will ask you to join in the work of remaking this nation, the only way it's been done in America for 221 years - block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand.
"What began 21 months ago in the depths of winter cannot end on this autumn night.
"This victory alone is not the change we seek. It is only the chance for us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were.
"It can't happen without you, without a new spirit of service, a new spirit of sacrifice.
"So let us summon a new spirit of patriotism, of responsibility, where each of us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves but each other.
"Let us remember that, if this financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we cannot have a thriving Wall Street while Main Street suffers.
"In this country, we rise or fall as one nation, as one people. Let's resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long.
"Let's remember that it was a man from this state who first carried the banner of the Republican Party to the White House, a party founded on the values of self-reliance and individual liberty and national unity.
"Those are values that we all share. And while the Democratic Party has won a great victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to heal the divides that have held back our progress.
"As Lincoln said to a nation far more divided than ours, we are not enemies but friends. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection.
"And to those Americans whose support I have yet to earn, I may not have won your vote tonight, but I hear your voices. I need your help. And I will be your president, too.
"And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces, to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of the world, our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand.
"To those - to those who would tear the world down: We will defeat you. To those who seek peace and security: We support you. And to all those who have wondered if America's beacon still burns as bright: Tonight we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity and unyielding hope.
"That's the true genius of America: that America can change. Our union can be perfected. What we've already achieved gives us hope for what we can and must achieve tomorrow.
"This election had many firsts and many stories that will be told for generations. But one that's on my mind tonight's about a woman who cast her ballot in Atlanta. She's a lot like the millions of others who stood in line to make their voice heard in this election except for one thing: Ann Nixon Cooper is 106 years old.
"She was born just a generation past slavery; a time when there were no cars on the road or planes in the sky; when someone like her couldn't vote for two reasons - because she was a woman and because of the colour of her skin.
"And tonight, I think about all that she's seen throughout her century in America - the heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we can't, and the people who pressed on with that American creed: Yes we can.
"At a time when women's voices were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot. Yes we can.
"When there was despair in the dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a nation conquer fear itself with a New Deal, new jobs, a new sense of common purpose. Yes we can.
"When the bombs fell on our harbour and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved. Yes we can.
"She was there for the buses in Montgomery, the hoses in Birmingham, a bridge in Selma, and a preacher from Atlanta who told a people that 'We Shall Overcome'. Yes we can.
"A man touched down on the moon, a wall came down in Berlin, a world was connected by our own science and imagination.
"And this year, in this election, she touched her finger to a screen, and cast her vote, because after 106 years in America, through the best of times and the darkest of hours, she knows how America can change.
"Yes we can.
"America, we have come so far. We have seen so much. But there is so much more to do. So tonight, let us ask ourselves - if our children should live to see the next century; if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as Ann Nixon Cooper, what change will they see? What progress will we have made?
"This is our chance to answer that call. This is our moment.
"This is our time, to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth, that, out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope. And where we are met with cynicism and doubts and those who tell us that we can't, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people: Yes, we can.
"Thank you. God bless you. And may God bless the United States of America."

Sunday, October 05, 2008

The Dancing Elephants: Palin Strikes Again

Did you watch the vice presidential debate? In the interest in not recapitulating the most non sequitur display of non-answers imaginable, I suggest you watch the real debate on you tube, or at and then catch the SNL Tina Fey parody.

Today, after her stunning victory of a mediocre performance at the debates, Palin launched another attack at the Obama camp. It was clear from the debate that Palin does not support negotiations with "terrorist states" without preconditions.

If, she had followed that line of reason, I would be inclined to say she had a real debatable question in her hot little hands.

But instead of taking the high road, she lays it in the gutter, casting doubt on his patriotism, instead of debating the issues. The fundamental statement the McCain-Palin ticket seem to be making is "He's not one of us." Why else would you attack Obama's patriotism and his Americanness, when there are plenty of real issues they could address such as the value of meeting with enemy nations without preconditions?

Nothing new, right? Republicans made the very same assertions were made against Michelle Obama when she said she was "really proud of her country" for the first time at a rally.

This time it has to do with the Senator's relationship to alleged terrorist sympathizer Bill Ayers.
Bill Ayers, was a founding member of the radical Weather Underground, which was involved in several bombings in the early 1970s, including attacks on the Pentagon and the Capitol.

Obama and Ayers, now a university professor, have met several times since 1995, when both worked with a non-profit group trying to raise funds for a school improvement project and a charitable foundation.

We see America as the greatest force for good in this world," Palin said at a fund-raising event in Colorado, adding, "Our opponent though, is someone who sees America, it seems, as being so imperfect that he's palling around with terrorists who would target their own country."

Obama sees America as imperfect, so he'd be willing to sacrifice it? Obama denounced Ayers actions. There is no formal relationship between the two. What exactly is the point of this line of debate? If it is to call Obama's character in question, Palin is going to have to do a whole lot more than prove that they served on the same board together, and once he held a house party for him ten years ago.

Why attack Obama on his patriotism, when it would be so much more salient to question him on foreign policy? It tinges on the the verge of something far nastier, something no one who supports senator Obama can even acknowledge for fear of alienating white voters, but is there, just as the blatant sexism in this race to the white house.

Now with all those white elephants dancing, doesn't it make for a darn good circus?

Shh. Let's not disturb them.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Fingerprints of Love/ Persecution

If you are a DNA evidence technician you have to ask yourself what are the fingerprints of love? Is it a healed heart? A kind word? An honest, yet gentle answer?

And to love, does that make you weak, as some have implied when they said, "Jesus is strong, not weak."

By having to make that statement, it seems as if we have somehow missed the point of love, compassion, and strength.

Is a man weaker because he exercises restraint against a man he know he can injure in order to demonstrate compassion, or is he stronger because he obliterates his enemy in the name of justice?

The bible doesn't seem to give a definitive answer, but one scripture speaks to me, " I desire mercy and not sacrifice."

Mercy is the foundation of God's love.

Yet as a friend pointed out to me, love is one of the most abused words ever given breath. People beat people in the name of love. Kill in the name of love. Belittle in the name of love. Use the words when the heart is so far from it.

After all the ultimate form of love is God's grace, which can be defined as unmerited favor that looks beyond the fault and sees the need.

So when we love, we are required to demonstrate the same love to others as God demonstrated to us through grace. This is no easy thing.

There are some people in this world who will hate you because you love them. Today, I discovered that.

The more you love them, the worse they respond. They hate you worse for loving them than they would've hated you if you'd hated them. It is almost as if people expect hate. Hate has become synonymous with human nature.

It isn't really because they hate you. It is because they hate themselves.

And because they hate themselves they will only, naturally, hate you. Sometimes I wonder if people are so twisted inside and feel so unworthy of love if they will not hate the person who loves them.

I find it ironic that the bible said that God is love. Jesus was killed not because he attempted to usurp the world in a violent coup, but because he told the world that God loved them enough to forgive them. Jesus said that if people loved the father, they would love him.

But people hated Jesus. They hated him because he challenged their beliefs. They hated that he had power to heal the sick. They hated him because he wasn't rich. They hated him because they wanted to be him. They hated him because he hung with low class people. They hated his ideas.

And as the scripture says, "They hated me without cause."

In the last 12 hours of Jesus' life many people wondered what was the truth about this man, labeled a blasphemer, a rebel, and a monster. And what is truth? That is the question Pilate, a purely political bureaucrat ultimately asks.

Even Pilate said "I find no fault in this man."

Yet, the son of God himself hung on a cross bearing the sins of all humanity, and the abject object of the world's hatred out of pure love.

John 15:18-19 "if the world hates you, know that it hated me before it hated you..."

2000 years later People still mistake kindness for weakness. They will do everything in their power to tear you down in the name of God and goodness to justify the fact that they don't want to lose their power. They will mock you. They will treat you wrong. They will hurt you in the name of love.

It is hard to love people who don't want love. They want power. They want influence. They want what you have. But offer them love, and you earn their spite.

The saddest part of this is, the thing that will heal that ugly hole that seems to suck life out of everything they encounter is only filled by the thing they seek to destroy.

God's antidote for hate is more love. He commands us, not suggests to us that loving our enemies is the only way that we can show that we are His children. It is our spiritual fingerprint.

Why? If love in a hate filled world is so aching why on earth would a just God demand that we continue to give it in the face of the most awful consequences?

Maybe, just maybe there is something about love, that overcomes hate not in the reaction of the hater, but the action of the person of the lover. That's why people who believe in justice have problems with grace, and love. Love appears unjust, on a universal level because it is something that none of us earned from God, yet because it is the ultimate victor over hate, and the inner being of God himself, it is more just than justice.

There is no victory in hate. Ultimately hate dies. But love remains eternal.