Beat You Like You Were Fred Waterford

There are times when the anger
is so deep I find myself reeling
in the emotions to keep from
jumping down the throats of
the people intent on believing this
nation isn’t racist anymore.

What world are you living in exactly?
Our bubbles can be safe places
but when one starts implying
trouble happens elsewhere and
everything is “fake news,” I call
in to question their ability to
be an actual human being.

It must feel good up there on
the pedestal of privilege.
It must feel real good.
You don’t have one care
in this world–no concern of
being attacked or harassed or
beaten like you were Fred Waterford
and hung on a wall for neighbors
to find while they’re mowing
their lawns.

Tell me, how can you call
a lynching on an oak tree suicide?
How?
This nation is designed to
mock and murder its minorities
and make sure the role of
“subordinate” stays that way.
“Here’s a small dish of manavelins
to hold you over until the next
batch of bullshit is released in
our favor. Stay tuned.”

America is built on the backs
of its oppressed and yet, America
acts like this fact is fiction.
“Sweep it under the rug.”
“Move that elephant out of the room.”
“Take history away from history.
This isn’t true!”
All the golden boys want their
golden girls to live in
an hour of disbelief.
This suits their blueprint.

But we are here to disrupt it
and shine light on what should
have been the focus centuries ago.
This nation is weeping; she cries
for her lost children; taken by the
hands of the blasphemers and
the pseudo-righteous.
She cries for her spirit is torn.
She cries because her soul is weak.

“Yea, though I walk through the
valley of the shadow of death,
I shall fear no evil.”

I shall fear no evil.
But evil better damn sure
fear me.

I Am Not The Bluest

she’s looking for pain
that pulsates in the darkest hour,
I am not on call, I cannot
rush to her aid, but I long
to be her fulfillment, however,
she says my search for happiness
scares her.

I find myself in a riddle, mixed
within markers that bypass a selected
territory. I carry my weight in pain
on my shoulders, eager to take
a chance on this woman who
counts clouds backward and
chews cinnamon flavored gum.
little pet peeves of mine, swept
under the rug, avoided like
the elephant in the room.

she braces herself for sunlight
that has been tapping on her eyelids for decades,
begging for entry.
there is no safe passage.
she has boarded up her
fragile heart and I collect
salty tears from the edge of
her lids, cup them in my
soul, and pray for forgiveness.

I am not the bluest.
I can only give her part-time
sadness and this… this
scares her.

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.

In Time

A Haibun

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Fresh Blossoms in February|Photo Credit: Tremaine L. Loadholt

You fear a connection–the two of us, prone to falling before we should. It’s inevitable. In time, there will be wishes made to make us something we cannot become. I see it in your eyes, a glimmer of hope; a piece of understanding that things will probably turn out the way that they are meant to and not how we would like them to be. How odd, is it not? How love can stand in a pool of want and drain into a sea of forgetfulness… It is the manifestation of the elder mothers, wanting what is best for the girls who came after them, for their lineage to remain steadfast and strong enough not to break. But, we are cracking at the seams, splitting in two–two women yearning for affection when love stands in the air waiting for us to breathe it in. If only we had the strength to grab it and hold on. If only we could move out of the way, disappear to a place where minds remain open. If only we could…

I won’t deny it–
I am attracted to you
In time, love will win.