Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Griot

Earlier this month I went to check out a film called The Griot. Wasn't the first time I learned about the original Rappers, but first time seeing Senegal pay homage to Ayiti. The beautiful West African images were a nice break from mainstream. Sitting there in the dark with all the other indes, I felt a strong sense of pan-African pride. And I was dazzled by the gigantic/majestic trees reaching high above ground/across landscape, like scenes from Avatar. Where Haiti waters back to Benin is when you see carabans turn into tap-taps. To understand griots, you have to understand spiritual matters; to understand Rap music, especially gangsta rap music, you have to understand past and current social ills. And it's not this man who's playing the kora, but many men playing; just like it's not me writing my books, but many speaking for you.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day is Every Day

Not every mother acts like a mom; and you, dear one knows this best. And sometimes fathers have to make up for the void. But this doesn't mean you can't still celebrate WOMAN. Cos she comes in so many different tender ways, from grandma to auntie to kind neighbor to Mama Angelou. So you too have a sweet, wonderful Mother's Day. Today and every day...

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Message to a Young Lady

Males are not calculus. We treat you the way you allow us to treat you

How long does your weave need to be before you realize you're already lovely just the way you are?

If you think he's a dog, then stop feeding him puppy show

Misery loves company, and your shady friends want your company

If you want advice about males, you ask another male. Not a bitter, angry female who'll only help you stay single

Pretty outside and ugly inside is ugly outside

Your tone of voice is the one accessory you don't pay enough attention to

Pop-poppin your gum in a crowded closed in space doesn't show how cool you are, but just how annoying you can be

Who you associate with doesn't necessarily define you. Hanging around those who help you fall says a lot about you

A diva has her own apartment, pays her own bills and buys her struggling parent a ticket to Tahiti

Going natural is a socio-political statement, not a fashion trend

Love is not OMG he's fine! Love is OMG he came thru for me!

Monday, May 7, 2012

The Terminator

Sometimes I feel like Stanley Crouch. The terminator of Black folk mess and author of The All-American Skin Game, Notes of a Hanging Judge, Reconsidering the Souls of Black Folk and In Defense of Taboos. Cos we both like to 'go there', even when it's not popular to do so. We both see the need for healing which begins with us and the need to step out of formula thinking and move inward and onward which still begins with us.

I asked Crouch why we haven't heard from him lately, especially since so much been happening in and out of the hood. Our expectation to have our Prez raise our children and make good choices for us seems worthy of the literary beatdown we usually get from the hanging judge. But I forgot about his first love which is jazz and writing about jazz. And so I just let the good fortune of running into him at a tribute to a sistas function lead the rest of the convo with a smile...