Give Them Something To Believe

Teaching the youth. My older cousin Phil and my younger cousin Alex, his nephew. Photo Credit: Tremaine L. Loadholt

Here, you see one of my older cousins speaking to one of my younger cousins, his nephew. Phil, my older cousin, is a successful businessman, an entrepreneur continuing to grow his brand. He has a vast amount of knowledge to share with anyone willing to listen and I watched him as he spoke to my cousin Alex, giving him pointers on what to do in life with his talents in order to have his dreams come true and in turn, work for him.

I sat there amazed by the exchange. As you can see, Alex is listening intently. He is focused. This is nothing new to Phil, regularly, he speaks to hundreds of people who have aspirations of being self-employed and successful in the fields of realty and investments. One of my brothers started his own clothing line, S.T.T.Y. (Stay True To Yourself) and a number of our family members have jumped on the bandwagon and are supporting the Kid by purchasing his creations. The first person I told my brother to reach out to was our cousin.

Young, African-American men need this. They are often hanging by the seat of their pants, struggling because they don’t know the way and they have no idea which path to choose. I am investing in my brother’s company. I believe in his dream. I tell him how exceptionally proud I am of him and I make it a point to rejoice with him when things go well and genuinely empathize when there are hiccups along the way.

The Kid, Posing, but he’s no poser

I want what is best for these young men in my life, for them to reach out and pull back a star. For them to jump up and shoot to the moon. They cannot do it alone. The village is still needed regardless of what some people believe. If we are not willing to get our hands dirty in the mix of catapulting our young ones to a height they’ve never experienced, who will? We must give them something they believe, show them that there is more beyond fast money and slow thinking. The future needs to be filled with a plethora of them paving the way for more and more and more little black boys who will yearn to be for and work for themselves.

If they’re dreaming, don’t crush it. Help build it up. Nurture it. Water it. Speak life over it. KEEP THEM OFF OF THE STREETS! The kind of money out there is the kind that’ll leave them wanting more or send them to an early grave. Our intention should be to watch them live, watch them soar.

If they’re flying high, they won’t have time to come down. Build a young black man up today. He needs that.

Believe me, he needs that.

12 Years

It comes before one’s ever truly ready.

And, although I’ve started and stopped several blogs, I’ve held an account here at WordPress for twelve solid years. Of all the blogging sites that I have tried, this one is my favorite. Time flies when you’re growing, doesn’t it? Will I see another twelve? Will WordPress? 

I guess we shall find out.  Thank you to each of you for reading, connecting, and building with me. It has been a pleasure. 

Peace and blessings. 


Post oral surgery. Friday, November 16, 2018.

On a blistering cold Friday morning,
I ventured out. In the comfort
and care of my cousin, we
maintained an appointment for
wisdom teeth removal.
I bit the bullet.
The top two were removed and
now, I am recuperating, ruminating,
and wrestling with thoughts of you.

Sometimes, you sneak up
on me when I am not prepared
to battle throughout the day because
of our many differences. I will not
say that you drain me, but you
hopscotch on a couple of sensitive
places and I refuse to have them
boxed in again.

And as I swish water from side to side
in my healing mouth, I think of how
it would be to finally have that one date
you’ve been threatening to take me on
for two years now.
And I name it, place it in a bag,
Toss it up in the air to see
Where it lands and my guess is
And will be on NEVER.

I am an optimist, but I have to be real.
These holes in my mouth
Do not tell the future,
But the ones in my heart do. 

The Blood of Old Souls

Part IV: Dilan

Courtesy of the young and extremely talented Iris Van Thol. Thank you, young one.

Dilan raced on all fours, leaping toward the Summit’s House, trying to out dodge the dawn. His hair, swaying in the evening breeze, a cloud of smoke trailing him. Moments ago, he snatched Mr. Noble’s throat in only three seconds — veiny mounds of flesh staining his beard, his teeth pulling in a pool of blood. Mr. Noble died whispering the combination to the company safe, but Dilan was already miles away.

The day started out like any other. Dilan was working the third shift at Noble’s Warehouse. He decided that today would be the day he’d ask Mr. Noble for a raise. Thirteen years as a lowly Entry Level Clerk weighed on Dilan. He had dreams, ambitions. He wanted to travel to amazing places and spend unnecessary amounts of cash that he did not have. He wanted to do what Mr. Noble did, be privileged. He tortured himself day and night. He had the courage, but whenever he thought to ask Mr. Noble, the crushing blows from his past crept into his bloodstream. He knew it would be best to wait.

And wait.

And wait.

And wait.

And before Dilan knew it, thirteen years to the day had arrived. He shrugged his shoulders, tucked in his previous lives, and mumbled a few words of motivation before approaching Mr. Noble.

“This is your day. You can do this. Noble owes you. Noble owes you. It’s yours. If he doesn’t give it to you. Take it.”

The sound of his past lives’ grumbling marked his ears and pushed fear into his soul.

“It’s yours… Take it.”

Dilan approached Mr. Noble. He fumbled with his words at first, but soon, he found stability and spewed out a number of truths about his work ethic and spotlighted his strengths too. Mr. Noble sat in his tiny chair, in his tiny office, twiddling his tiny thumbs, and spoke in a tiny voice, acknowledging Dilan’s presence, but ignoring his words. He is a shrewd creation of a man who smells like buttered cabbage stew and cured ham. His words spilled out of him, flowing without measure as Dilan patiently waited for his response.

“Now, Dilan. Ain’t no way in the Devil’s Hell you can have a raise. I can barely keep the lights on in this joint. Look around. Open those beady eyes of yours. Do you see any glimpse of glamour hanging on these walls? Hell, I can’t even upgrade the fax machine. So, that’s what I got on your raise, buddy. Nothing. Not a dime.”

Dilan began to fade. His arms bloated at his sides. His eyes inflated, poking out of their sockets. His teeth began to protrude, each enamel-laced protrusion now layered with saliva. He tried to subdue the past lives, keep them at bay, but each one gathered up, measuring thirteen years of waiting for happiness. The weight of this was heavy. Dilan’s legs grew three sizes bigger and he began to sprout up like a tree. Mr. Noble sat in amazement, unable to speak. A beast growing before him would soon have its feast.

A moment passed and before Mr. Noble could speak, Dilan exploded toward him, bit down on his neck, and pulled his throat from its rightful place. The past lives warned Dilan. They charged him to run — get away. Far away. Mr. Noble laid quiet at his tiny desk. His tiny thumbs rolling over paperwork. The tiny room shrinking in on him.

Mr. Noble died whispering the combination to the company safe, but Dilan was already miles away.

The past lives urged Dilan to continue, to get to the Summit’s House where a commoner’s throat would make a person two million dollars richer. Louder, the voices became. Louder and Louder. Dilan ran, his mouth slowly shifting to human form, his legs losing their tenacity, his arms, squaring off into their previous formation. Inside his demented head, the only words that remained were:

“It’s yours… Take it.”