couldn’t have said it better myself!

my big sister omi just laid it allllllll the way out in this blog post.  (i’ve italicized it for clarity between it and my own words.)

12.12.2009
an exercise in restraint
i’ve done a bit of meeting and greeting lately. feels good. i am grateful for the confidence and clarity it’s brought. plus, i haven’t done deep visualization in a long time, so it’s been catalyzing.

it’s also reminded me how impatient i can be in the “will he/won’t he call” stage.

typically, i don’t mind doing a little legwork if i think the guy’s worth it. if you want something, go get it, right?

since i’m nearly always operating from my intuitive, heart-self and not my head, i often see and am attracted to said potential. therefore, my natural inclination is to give them what they need without deep regard as to whether or not they are able to return the favor. i always get the basic, “decent guy” packaging, so they are at least willing to try to reciprocate.

unfortunately, where i can get ocean-deep, they often flounder. and that’s when things fall apart. so i’ve decided it’s probably better to step back and let them show themselves first.

now more than ever, i am totally focused on cultivating intentionality in my relationships–even in the beginning stages.

love can come and will be reciprocated as applicable. i’m open to that. and i’m still gonna get mine when i want it. however, there will be no commitment without real, tangible outcomes, and i have no problem stating that very clearly.

you want me? that’s sweet. prove it.

over the last thirteen years, i’ve learned three big lessons: first, there’s a thin line between mysterious, creative depths and the masking of unearthed and unacknowledged pain. second, if i need a crowbar and forceps to approach your psyche, it’s not gonna work. third–and probably most important–a well-rehearsed melange of coping and defense mechanisms is not a personality.

lots of really “nice guys” have all that going. in spades.

so, yeah. i’m ready to hop back on the merry-go-round.

…just understand that i am heavily armed.

this goes, for friends, too. shit.

food for thought: a stream of consciousness & general rantiness

nuggets of  truth & hilarity from my marathon talkfests with fiqah, of possum stew.

– racism doesn’t need hate in order to function. no form of oppression does. in fact, ignorance is quite the consummate fuckery fuel. think about how many times you have been confronted with information to the contrary of your (racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, or otherwise oppressive-to-a-group-of-people) opinion or belief & found that information was all you needed to set your lil brain in the right direction? that doesn’t, of course, mean that hate isn’t fuel for oppression.  it means that even without hate, these things exist & still manage to fuck people over.

– love can move mountains. it can also be used to justify the ugliest things humans do/ say.  love doesn’t erase fucked up shit. it can and does exist alongside this fucked up shit. don’t excuse the fucked up shit.

– when talking to a child, imagine that what you’re saying is the last thing you will ever say to that child. especially if that child is your own. what do you want their last thought of you to be? don’t assume shit. (i personally believe that this should be extended to everyone.  you can tell someone about themselves without destroying them or dragging them into a fight.  don’t be that asshole who tries to climb in the fucking casket at your girl’s funeral cuz you weren’t doing right by her before she passed away.)

– either you play the victim role or act as a survivor. you can’t throw up the shield of “i’ve been hurt” and then use that as a reason to treat people like shit. to generalize. to lump folks into the same group because it’s convenient to do so.  this includes jumping to conclusions based on something that’s triggered you instead of simply keeping yourself aware that something triggering just happened. also: if your responses to triggers of all sizes are rarely or never proportionate to said triggers, you’re fucking up. big time. & there may be a lot more healing left undone by you.

– never eat the pickles from a bodega. the pickle jars are older than that bottle of fucking steak sauce in the back of your mama’s fridge. no, really.  eww.

– most folks who feel they have alter egos may be just afraid of being their whole contradictory selves. there’s nothing wrong w/ admitting that, and eventually working that shit out.

– people who insult you in snide ways are often so intimidated that they really don’t know how to engage with you without saying some fucked up shit. cuz they are SCARED. shit. don’t feel bad. (not that i didn’t know that. but fiqah reminded me.)

– it is not absurd to love someone deeply as a person, think they’re a great lay, & then find them as a mate to be worthy of a kick across the face. the same is true of people who’d be awesome co-parents, but terrible long-term or lifetime partners.

– just because you’re louder than i am, doesn’t mean you win. allowing yourself to be dragged into a fight is feeding the bullshit.

more fiqah wisdom as it comes. i love that woman.

full moon gratitude

i’m in a very serious state of flux right now, and struggling to remain focused on my silver linings. this is an attempt to count the things that are present in my life.

transformation
cheerleaders
jarritos sodas
quorn turk’y loaf
serendipitous mercury retrograde happenings
food items properly smothered in bbq sauce
gold eye shadow
bronzer
bacon
water
honey
killa (word to la voz latina)
fertile ground
quirky black girls
west philly

full moon gratitude.

new beginnings
silence
willful isolation
sundresses
florida water
abundant change
random phonecalls
cumin
onion powder
babies
chosen family
pink dresses
libraries
vinegar
bloggity goodness
raspberry sorbet
cheap wine
pink eye shadow

continually, i sit at the seat of bliss.

be bold, be red: october 30.

mil gracias a nezua for posting this on umx, and reminding me to begin with!

Be Bold Be Red Goes Viral Loco Visual

Beloved Survivors, Warriors, Allies, Activists, Organizers, Artists, Healers, Visionaries, Sisters and Friends,

In October 2007 people all over the United States gathered physically and in spirit to speak out against violence against women of color. Some of us wore red all day and explained that we were reclaiming and reframing our bodies as a challenge to the widespread acceptance of violence against women of color. Some of us wrote powerful essays about why we were wearing red and posted them on the internet. Some of us gathered with bold and like-minded folks and took pictures, shared poetry and expressed solidarity.

This year, on the first anniversary of the Be Bold Be Red Campaign, we invite you to make your bold stance against the violence enacted on women and girls of color in our society visible. In D.C., Chicago, Durham, Atlanta and Detroit women of color will be gathering to renew our commitment to creating a world free from racialized and gendered violence, and this time, we’ll be using a new technology called CyberQuilting to connect all of these gatherings in real time. To learn more about CyberQuilting, which is a women of color led project to stitch movements together using new web technologies and old traditions of love and nurturing, visit www.cyberquilt.wordpress.com.

This letter is an invitation for you and yours to participate in a gathering in your city on Thursday, October 30th that will be webcast to similar gatherings in other cities. We are calling on you because we recognize and appreciate the work that you and the organizations you work with are doing everyday to make this a more loving and less violent world for women and girls in oppressed communities. Please join us on October 30th so that other warriors in this struggle can be strengthened and affirmed by the energy of our collective ferocity!

If you are not located in D.C., Chicago, Durham, Atlanta and Detroit for the webcast, you can still participate by wearing Red on October 30, 2008 and send us your pictures to beboldbered@gmail.com

Also we are asking once again that people wear Red on October 30, 2008 and send us your pictures to beboldbered@gmail.com

As we receive them we will upload your pictures under “Red Pictures Today.”

Also, as well as to share your stories of Red on this website under “Why are you wearing Red on October 30, 2008.”

So, are you ready?!

toot toot! heeeeeeeey, beep beep!

it’s my birthday.
i’m thankful for:

love
considerate friends
4-packs of moscato
how far i’ve come
where i’m headed
ashé & amen.

on: standing in the gap

when a friend falls down
falls apart
falls out w/ someone they love
needs to scream
needs to cry
needs to use expletives excessively, in succession, making little to no sense
that’s when you know you trust them
that’s when you know they trust you
that’s when you honor that space & that event
i give thanks for the opportunity to do that and be on both ends
and if i count you in that number
please know that you’re more than welcome, as long as i have the ability to provide for you the arms to hold you up or the hands to piece you back together
the back to carry you
the courage to see that you are not a burden, but a reflection
i will love you
i will support you
i will honor and respect you
let this be my pact
from now until the last blink.

ashé + amen

shine on!

dope girl fresh has been featured on the ultraviolet underground blog.

altered thought’s silly ass is back at it. this time, he wants you to learn the basics of having relations.

laetiçia has learned the glory of bragging, a valuable lesson learned from mama gena.

falsabaiana’s kids won the GOLD in their ballroom competition. (girl, gimme a link to read if there is one) she’s also a recent birthday girl! yaaaaaaaaay!

this is my time to celebrate ppl i know/ love (especially myself! lol) & the wonderful things they do/ create, no matter how big or small.

i don’t feel like delving today.

that is, i’m cleaning out my closets literally but the figurative act of doing so is way too much to handle at the moment. there are things churning around in my head about becoming a doula, becoming a massage therapist, & about this evolution i’m experiencing overall. i am a crafter, a day jobber, a writer . . . all these things that seem to be vying for dominance in my life. i mean, the logic says that i’d be without a place to be all this “other stuff” without having a pain in the ass day job, right? but i could not possibly look fwd to leaving work each day if i didn’t come home to my creatively-infused home, right? so much. so many things. i’ve got to be immediately occupied w/ working, crafting, healing (my tattoo is healing funny, but from what i surmise it’s an issue of its locale on my body & not shoddy work by jason, but more on that later), loving, laughing, building & a bunch of other -ings before i can even think about becoming the fabulously & fully self-employed self i want to be 1 year from now. there’s a lot. i don’t know if i can say i feel overwhelmed, or simply unaware of where/ how to begin.
thankfully, though, i’m being held up by folks who feel inclined on a consistent basis to contribute in a positive way
i’m learning to juggle (& eventually balance) it all
loosing myself of things/ persons unnecessary
finding out exactly what it is to actualize potential in the face of what can only be described as the “no-you-can’t” mass choir & its accompaniment, the faithful “i’ve-never-heard-of-that-so-it-must-not-be-valid” chorale. fuck ’em both; i’ve got work to do.
i’m letting go of the idea that i’ve got to get everything done all at once just because i think of everything all at once. this is not freaking easy. at all.
i’m learning process
practicing patience
trying my damnedest not to just up & quit the things i hate, though they get harder on the daily
i still feel like i’m waiting for my turn to jump into something. maybe a chute or giant water slide that leads to something with which i’m entirely unfamiliar. i’m less angsty about it, though.

i just wanna be fully ready to get this show on the fucking road.

my inner child needs a hug.

& an apology
& that new pair of punky brewster sneakers
someone who’ll listen the first time she says someone’s house is on fire across the street
& someone to explain why she has to be nice to or give two shits about daddy & his folk
someone to tell mommy to stop putting relaxers in her hair, no matter how much “easier” it is to style
& a friend who won’t steal her cabbage patch dolls
a real talk about boys, sex, sexuality, & why her uncles keep nudie mags
to know that difference between mommy’s cigarettes & that funny smelling stuff ricky & his friends smoke in the living room
to get to know all of the bisabuelos before they die or have strokes
to learn to jump double dutch
to learn to play chess, cuz checkers is for suckas
& to know how beautiful she is
to know it’s more than, better than okay to be black
to be unashamed of her roundness
to understand that saying no is a tool, & she should do it often

she needs more quality time with momzie
violin lessons
more dance classes
no more wave nouveau
better access to health care
more smart black girlfriends
more books
more space
a savings account
more time to play w/ the records in the basement
a trip to every cultural event and street fair philadelphia ever had to offer
to see her own reflection and smile
to know that she’s loved, a child of god no less than the stars
& most importantly
that she’s gonna grow up to be just fine.

my current feelings/ thoughts on thanksgiving:

i don’t feel like it.

this year, i want a turkey sammich in one hand & some sort of intoxicant in the other, while watching some kind of ridiculous film or television program on dvd (see: get a life, in living color, pootie tang, or napoleon dynamite) with some friends.

i will have that kind of thanksgiving. dammit.

even if my entire family converges on my itty bitty apartment & decides to eat candy off exu’s shrine space . . .
even if my perpetually chilly apartment lets the hawk in . . .
even if my janky ass oven puts an unnecessary coating of crispness on everything i bake inside of it . . .

i will enjoy this day off.

maferefun sango!!!

kawo! kabiyesile!

thank you, baba, for sending my brother my way. i love love love LOVE that boy to pieces. thank you. we are each other’s cheer leader, each other’s comic relief, & most importantly we have a taciturn understanding that can be expressed simply by the raising of an eyebrow. my brother is so sharp, too. thank you for bringing a sharply dressed black man around me, one who actually compliments me and means it. he is not trying to sleep with me (not that i know of). he is socially conscious, and gives a damn about his folks. he will entertain my conversations about all things sociopolitical, & never once calls me ‘too smart.’ we crack nerd jokes & he never, ever, EVER tells me i think too much/ too hard.

i’m blessed to have a friend like vsf. i love that crazy child. i do.

adupe.

things i really love this week:

my new favorite post on one tenacious baby mama, which can be found right here.

birthday presents!!! (i never got a lot of presents as a kid, so when ppl give me stuff i am not only bowled over but i feel very magical & sparkly, in addition to overall special)

new music

sex*

an internet connection that works long enough for me to cop a new anorak

odara healthy hair food & various other items from chic afrique

my mama

marathon grill

the series of contradictions that make up my blog reading & life overall

my crazy ass, sweet, thoughtful, creative, unique, forever-looking-out-for-me friends

angela bofill’s 1st album ON VINYL (thank you, brian, SO very much!)

* i always love sex. this is nothing new. lol.

it’s so easy to make

one of those “oh this year i’m gonna ____________” posts, only to be disappointed in myself next year when i read it over. i know how that mess goes and i refuse to do that to my psyche. instead, i’m gonna lay it all out thusly:

if you called/ sent a text/ emailed/ sang/ clapped/ danced/ gifted or did anything else in honor of my birthday, i:

1) love
2) appreciate
3) am thankful for
4) am glad to know
5) owe my most sincere thanks to
6) am reminded why i continually fux with
7) hope to always be friends with
8) need to buy a drink for
9) probably need to spend more time with
10) just plain fucking HEART

you.

thank you. you rock. you are a superstar & SO wonderful for blessing me on my special day. i will return the favor, provided that i don’t actually forget your birthday. & even if i do, i’ma return the favor. because you’re an absolute pumpkin & deserve all that positivity returned to you ten thousand fold.

this was a day when i could look around & really feel the myriad ways in which i am blessed. i hope to continue to feel that until this particular revolution around the sun has completed & i begin the next. ecstasy, abundance & bliss. those are the things i want.

eight random facts about me: the birthday edition

i was tagged by miss dark daughta. & dammit, i like these survey thingies so why not?

the rules, though i kinda love to bend or break rules:

Post the rules before you give the facts. Post eight random facts about yourself. At the end of your blog post, you need to tag eight people and list their names. Leave the people you tagged a comment on their blog, letting them know that they’ve been tagged.

these are things i have grown up about in the past 26.999999998 years. they’re not birthday-specific necessarily, but still the kind of thing you want to throw confetti at yourself about, non? definitely little (and big) reasons to be glad to be myself.

one: my love of language is a great source of my pride.
i was the only child in a house of pretty much grown ppl for the first 2 years of my life, & i most certainly took full advantage of that. i groomed myself to know what people were talking about, how to express myself, & never be at a loss for words. i was a rather articulate 3 year old, & one day i declared to my mother that i was gonna start reading. she didn’t believe me until i got stuck on a word & asked her how to pronounce it. as an adult, i am kind of a language whore. words are sooooo important to me! i like being able to express one idea in several ways. spanish is pretty much under my belt, so next come portuguese, yoruba, & probably akan or maybe dutch. i love words.

two: i used to hate my name.
i thought my life would be simpler, were i to have a ‘regular’ name like simone or allison. hell, i had a best friend named adina & i was jealous of her because at least she wasn’t [my name]. now i know better. who else would i be, except [my name]? i mean, really. as i got older, i was okay w/ my first name, since i felt that [diminutive nickname] wasn’t an acceptable nickname name. but a big point of contention was my middle name. i was named after my father in that respect, & having grown up essentially without him contributing positively or consistently to my life made me bitter. we’re not gonna get into the last name. i don’t hate it anymore. i’ve made my peace with it, it’s . . . mine just as much as it is my father’s or anyone else’s who has it. i’m okay w/ being myself on paper . . . & the racial ambiguity gets me some laughable reactions. definitely. lol.

three: i don’t genuinely know what it is to sense guilt about or be ashamed of myself.
that is, i’ve felt uneasy or embarrassed, but actual shame is something i’ve never felt. actual guilt? like, i shouldn’t have done that & didn’t enjoy it & don’t ever want to partake in it again because i never should have bothered guilt? you’ve got to be fucking kidding me. to coerce me into something has always been to frighten me into it, or to rationalize me into it. i’ve been apologetic if my actions have caused a result i didn’t intend, or if i’ve been completely misunderstood . . . but guilt & shame i don’t do. i’m thankful, really. that shit can be crippling.

four: i will give until it hurts.
i used to be mad about that & considered myself weak for it. but i’ve managed to discover something very important about being a giving person: giving until it hurts is only something to lament when you know you oughtn’t to begin with. that is, i know who deserves the best i have to offer — & those folks often give me the same. i am glad to say that i give when it’s okay to give. i’ve been blessed, fortunately, with reciprocity in that area of my life.

five: i was a virgin until age 19.
i knew about sex from reading informational books (not romance novels or anything), so my knowledge of STDs & other foolishness was pretty good for someone who thought you were supposed to make noises while fucking . . . even if your partner’s stroke was weak. even if you were too busy thinking about finding a job somewhere. lol! i was mature enough to realize that pleasure was supposed to be a bonus to the biological function of sex; as i’ve grown older / more mature, i use that as my guide. there are some things that simply won’t fly w/ me. waiting until i’d been on this planet almost two decades was good. had i really given myself the space to, i would have waited longer, most likely. but it’s okay. it’s all good. now look at me. i’m quite the pleasure-driven individual overall & it’s been really good for my sex life. yay me! i wish more folks would adopt a similar idea about sex. if it isn’t gonna be fully enjoyable, i don’t do it.

six: i love being single.
as much as i might say i want a man and/ or some babies, single womanhood (not living with anyone who came out of my womb or regularly copulates with me, any of that sort of breeding/ coupled up/ cohabitation stuff) has been exceptionally good to me. i think my creativity has been bolstered by not having to worry about anyone but myself. my deep desire for space & time to do my thing the way i do it has been really helpful. i feel like living with people (roommates especially, sometimes kids or an SO) puts me on stage. i have to rock the strongblackwoman veneer, be super proactive, etc. i hate that shit, & until i’m fully comfortable being my full self at least 20 of 24 hours per day i don’t really think i need a man or babies. hell, i don’t even want a pet. one of my houseplants is barely making it right now, cuz sometimes the high maintenance nurturing shit just isn’t fly to me all the time. lol.

seven: my love of clothing & footwear might put me in debt one day.
but that’s OKAY. cuz i’m a fan of the bargain shopping. or, the initially inexpensive items i find don’t get a 2nd thought. lol. i like pretty colors, nice fabrics (i can’t wear wool or any of the sweater stuff. *pout*), & find that seasonally i change my mind about what i want to look like. that’s neat. reinvention is key. renewal is natural. so, why not do it on all fronts? besides, i kinda love the compliments i get when i throw some fly shit together.

eight: the family i’ve chosen for myself is every bit as important as the one i was born into.
anyone who knows me is aware of my continual growth as a person with the help/ love/ support of the people who’re fortunate enough to be saved to the SIM card in my cell phone. my family, especially over the past year or so, has been a pillar when i really thought i was gonna lose my mind. i love my mom & sisters, my grandfather, my uncles & cousins (there are a LOT of cousins) . . . but none of them will ever make me feel like i’m unloved/ lost without their presence. i used to feel kind of weird about loving my non-family ppl as much as i do my blood relations, but i’ve gotten over it. actually, in a lot of instances the family i’ve chosen has done more for me (in an emotional support/ mental stimulation sense) than my mama & them. i have some of the best, most wonderful, kind, giving, fantastic, just plain fly ass people as friends. i am so fortunate. i love them all so much. i love knowing that i can unflinchingly call a few women my sisters, & that the feeling is never gonna be one-sided. i’m blessed. i could sit here & name their names, but . . . honestly, the most high knows who they are. men & women alike who have really, truly, for real been good to me. thank god for every last one of them.

i tag tia, aj, atlanta, melissa, riley (does he even read this blog?), & um… kenya. i would also tag omi & dark daughta, but they’ve already done it. lol. i guess i’ll have to carry it over to myspace or facebook to grab more victims?

whatever. if you don’t do this, you’re just depriving me the opportunity to get deeper into your business. ;)

departures are inevitable.

human beings transition constantly. we cannot stop folks from being born or dying. we cannot do anything about the loss of connections between ppl. this means that when that marriage unravels, whether it’s yours or not, it has to be allowed to do so. when your dearest, oldest friend on earth becomes someone you no longer recognize, leave it at that. your hands have to be open so you can receive the something new/ better / different. dissolution is natural. it happens.
& sometimes, through this dissolution, we find things we may have forgotten. there’s a way in which we strip down. we lose the attitude, the posturing, the girdles & whale bone corsets; we go back to ourselves at age 3, peeing the bed & wondering why the fuck there’s nobody who’ll stop the night from swallowing us up. it’s hard. it can be ugly, unpleasant, unkind, & all these other crazy things. not because there’s anything wrong w/ us, but because that’s what it takes sometimes. go back to the point at which you started to crack a little bit. see what the unraveling is really all about. what were the million straws under the one that broke your back? or was the first one the most impactful?

i don’t know. it’s taken me three days to write this. i started off writing inspired by jill scott’s new album (which, for the record, i find nearly impossible to listen to) & some things that friends have been sharing w/ me about their lives. everyone seems to be going through some exceptionally rough shit at the moment. i feel bad, but at the same time i feel unmoved on some level. not unsympathetic, but . . . unmoved. i don’t believe that any one of us is gonna be stuck in our current situations. i may be idealistic, maybe naive or whatever. but i know i’m not going through this bullshit for nothing. i feel like it’s easier to assume that i’ll be stuck in this fucked up job for the rest of my adult life, because hopefulness takes effort. it takes energy to make sure i see the whole picture, to ensure that i’m aware of the finiteness (i can’t believe that’s actually a word lmao) of my situation. i have options to way, moves to make. i am not stuck. i am not gonna be here, this way, forever.

change is inevitable. transition is the norm.
i just have to be a part of it. for real.

last night

was a breath of fresh god. i laughed, ate, drank, loved, played, & generally enjoyed ppl w/ whom i love to commune. i mean, wow. i really had fun.

i need to get yani & foster their own tv show.

karas, thank you SO much for opening your home to us
we’ll celebrate extra hard when you c-walk down the aisle in may next year
i love you for being your generous, wild self
next time you need a box of jeezis aych, holla @ your girl

xo

mariam’s gonna be famous!

look!!! she’s the DIYer of the week at newsday’s cheap thrills blog. yay! i strongly recommend that you buy her designs. i own a few pieces, i’ve given some pieces as gifts & i can guarantee that you will not ever, under any circumstances, find products like hers. mariam’s one of the most intuitive, progressive, avant garde jewelry designers i know. i love her to pieces. & her little boy is CUTE. i wanna put him on some rye toast w/ horseradish mayo & red leaf lettuce. mmmmm, tasty baby. . .

i’m not a huge fan of

the studio version of jill scott’s “hate on me,” because it sounds kinda overproduced . . . & sort of um . . . canned, if you will. but she sang it at the black lily closing show in may & i loved it. maybe it was ?uesto & the band, maybe it was because amy fucking winehouse had shown up. or maybe because i know just wtf she’s talking about in the lyrics. my sista said if i gave you diamonds/ out of my own womb/ would you feel the love in that/ or ask, “why not the moon?” can we pause, reflect & breathe on that for a moment, please? i mean, damn. there are some folks on this earth who will tear every last tendon & bit of muscle from your bones & seek more if they believe you’ve got more for them to take. there are sometimes instances when ppl will show you precisely how ridiculous they are, & it’s like katt williams said: “you mad at breakfast? nigga, you gangbangin on bacon?” pissed, desperate. grabby & needy for no reason other than their own exaggerated sense of entitlement & sadly inflated ego. tearing apart everyone around them in the name of being whom or what, i do not know. but they do it; & think that shit is peace. isn’t.

the thing is, we are all humans
& we all have our moments where we have to think critically about others & by extension ourselves (i hope we all think critically about ourselves at some point or another). not to take away from or tear down anyone, but to really see who we are & what it’s hittin for. head on. & truly, i think that within such processes, we kinda gain a clarity. a perspective that shows us a little better how we simply aren’t ever really in a position to shit on someone else’s situation. yes, someone may be troubled or misguided or whatever. but is that really a reason to decide that they’re undeserving of your keeping your nose out of their shit?

i don’t mean people who maim bunnies or kidnap elderly women or pee on teenage girls on videotape and then blame the shit on their brothers. i’m talking about your homegirl who’s trying to finish her master’s degree & make herself a better person at the same time. i’m speaking of anyone who’s just living her or his every day life & is most likely progressing with it. nothing wrong w/ wondering about why your people are in the mess that they are. there’s no shame in venting about the one friend you have who continually places her or himself in situations that always require mediation or some large amount of financial assistance. you can wonder all those things — i think it’s normal, to gain the best perspective possible on how you may or may not fit into all of this.

but if you’re just plain pissed at someone’s existence on this planet & instead of ignoring them you’re seeking out reasons to talk shit on them, then perhaps you need to go rap w/ dr. phil or somebody. cuz that’s just ridiculous.

straight vampires, yo.
leave that shit alone. some of us work to get where we are, while others just end up there serendipitously. either way, i’m not in a position to judge.

i’m not afraid of/ what i got/ i paid for . . .

i’m back to

where i was about three weeks ago. only my thought process is fueled by a conversation i had w/ some sistas the other night.
i know there are systems in place to stop us dead in our tracks. literally, even. i know that it’s sometimes so impossible to even see the top of that mountain made of disappointment, disaster, dreams, & desperation that climbing that motherfucker seems like a really sick joke. baby, i know what it’s like to have someone smile in my face & wish to hell that they could call me a nigger but instead just say “sweetie,” “honey,” or “girlfriend.” & i used to ache to know what it must have felt like to be acquainted w/ folks like my self, not just folks who looked like me. that ache grew.
the resentment, the annoyance, & the overall feeling of being fucked up in the game . . . those things were winning. i wouldn’t let them, though. & i won’t now.
because if i look myself in the mirror & decide that every fucking moment of my life is a war — a war that i don’t even think can be won — then i may as well pack it up . . . particularly if i come out the front door swingin on everyone i can w/ my machete or cutlass.
by virtue of biology, i am a woman. by virtue of biology, i am black. & by virtue of biology, we have become targets. we remain targeted now. everyone with a lick of sense & deductive reasoning skills knows about the prison industrial complex, COINTELPRO, the big tobacco plots, & everything else on this entire planet which has been put together to snuff the poor, non-white, &/ or female.
yes, baby, i know.
but for me, that venom cannot be turned in on myself
it will not be the weapon i use to slash every hand that reaches out to give to or help me
i will not blindly love what looks like me exclusively because of that fact
it is not okay to hate
ever

cuz if they do it to us, & we do it to them, exactly what the blue fuck is that gonna get anyone?

it’s not gonna give us any of the shit that’s been taken from, beaten out of, drained from, or confused about us. we will not get back yoruba, igbo, twi, akan, hausa, fongbe, kiswahili, xhosa, or any other tongue. our wombs will not take back in the children of rape, nor will they serve as a place to hide the children that we don’t want to be a part of this shit here. hate will not extract what makes you lighter skinned, her hair wavier than it is anything else, that baby’s eyes bright green, what made malcolm’s hair red . . . we can’t undo it. mahatma was NOT playin one bit when he said that an eye for an eye would leave the world blind. cuz if we hate on them, & they hate us some more, & we all go back & forth when will we have time to love ourselves? how do we build ourselves up if we’re wasting energy tearing someone else’s shit down? believe it or not, there has to be room for everyone . . . if you believe in a creator, then how could you not think so?

i must ask this, because i like where i live
i love my people
& i’ve been in that position before where when i say i’m DAMN good friends w/ white women, i get that sideways look. & i have to brace myself for the cries of ‘traitor,’ or worse yet being shunned or pitied because i’m ‘confused’ about who’s really got my back & who doesn’t.
cuz the same sista i want to help with her parenting skills already thinks something’s the fuck wrong with me since i don’t dress like she does. the sista who has the same nappy hair i do, the same ntozake shange books i do, respects the gangsta of kathleen cleaver the same way i do . . . she’s still poppin shit because she don’t think hers stinks. because she’s taking in superficial things about me & deciding FOR me what i should/ shouldn’t be a part of. what part of the game is that?
& the biology isn’t enough for any of us anymore. we don’t respect each other by virtue of blackness, because we are not all in the same neighborhoods by virtue of such. we are all over the place because legally, we could be . . . & the status shit is SERIOUS in these streets right now. fuck the white folks gentrifying all over the nation, niggas is fightin niggas over what some niggas appear to have, be, do, want, or feel. & that, my dears, is fucked up. screw standing up for anyone who’s willing to cut your ass down — black, white, yellow, peach, beige, blue-black, brown, red, or other. i will not, under any circumstances, support destruction of others by virtue of my own dislike for how they carry themselves. not unless it’s fully crucial to my survival.

i know what you’re talking about, but maybe you’ve never experienced what i have.

i was born fighting,
i will die fighting
but in between, i will choose my battles.

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