Friday, December 30, 2011

plunging into a new year.

there's one more day left in 2011. admittedly for me, it's been
a year of sharp peaks and valleys. if you've read this blog on
a regular basis, every so often you get a glimpse of that journey.

i can say without hesitation that i don't do resolutions. i've
always felt that if one cultivates their personality enough where
they're resolute about most things they want out of life and themselves,
then you don't need the knee-jerk seasonal habit. i do take this
time to honestly reflect on the past year and regroup to hit the
ground running once the new year begins. last year, that was a bit
tough due to my Grandma Alexander leaving this world for the next
right before Christmas. and i've been more susceptible to the
post-holiday blues this year. however, i'm writing this in a serene
but upbeat mood. so...

what i've managed to learn this year as far as writing goes is how
to effectively craft a routine that allows me to dig in on the words
but not feel burnt out. National Novel Writers' Month DEFINITELY kept
me honest and motivated in that regard. another thing i've learned in
regards to my own writing is that now, more than ever, some stories i
have kept under wraps can now begin to be told.

personally, i've allowed myself the freedom to speak on what bothers
me more. and to not have any expectations of immediate understanding
once i do. thankfully, i'm surrounded by folks who do. i've managed
to scrape away that mental residue that forms when dealing with people
that like to make things more complicated than they are. and i've learned
to not only let people go, but i've learned that even if they come back,
to hold onto the fact that they may leave again because one of the few
things certain is change.

i hope 2012 is definitely worth the huge plunge i will take starting
January 1st. and if not, at least i'll look damn good living. to all
of you reading this, may your new year be full of dreams realized and
worlds you've stored in your hearts sprung true before your eyes. thanks
for reading, and have a safe and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

haiku 12.29.11

glass ceilings above
don't cut when you crash through them;
pain comes long after.

proud against the storm

have you ever noticed a small bird caught up in a storm?

it seems as if it is suffering against the brute force of
the wind, that it can't take the incessant pounding of the
rain beating upon its feathers. you start feeling a twinge
of sadness for it. you start to think that it'll get swept
away in the midst of the storm and will never grow up and

and what is that bird thinking?

'when the time is right, i will fly proud.'

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

dark moon settling

there are not
enough curse words in the known world
that i could engrave on your soul
with the persistence of Mongol arrows
think of this
as the satisfactory breath
after ten 'f--k you's
said in the length of time it takes
to say 'Mississippi'
i want to outrun
the Elvin Jones drum solo
that is entering its second set within my ears
and i'm fresh out of tears
but overstocked on bitter words
in lieu of bullets
don't ask me for sunshine
when you see the dark moon settling in
if you appreciated the light more often
you would be able
to see past the shroud

haiku 12.28.11

the heart lays siege to
all like hand grenades; no lies
can quench that fire.

scene from a movie for insomniacs

this is the part
where fog makes a home before my eyes
and rain lives after a fall
through windows made
from broken beer bottles
and splintered hopes
i sit with a blanket of sorrow
and damn if it didn't grow to fit me
from the last time life threw it on my shoulders
(maybe i should call it
a keep-me-down instead of hand-me-downs)
this is not
the stereotypical poetic malaise
birthed by heartbreak
and weaned on mournful guitars and stale wine
my head doesn't feel fine
and time dances slow for others on the shore
out here
on the waters of sadness
you learn that grey is a state of mind
instead of color
the day lives only to pity you
and the night
howls as it wields whips made from your nightmares
then you wonder
what it is like
the moment after
you drown

Saturday, December 24, 2011

music break: James Brown

c'mon man...i couldn't let the holiday come up without
some music...James Brown style!!! have a Merry Christmas

Friday, December 23, 2011

haiku 12.22.11

no longer do i
imagine you naked; your
eyes expose plenty

Thursday, December 22, 2011

kisses from a snowflake

*for brownin'

there's always a chill
that drops into view
between the times you and i share
it fills the air
like snowflakes that love the earth so much
but are hesitant
believing their love won't stand out
amid a blank sky and silence
i think you and i
drift like they do
with hopes and dreams
collected in crystal and fragile
repaired too many times to bear breaking again
but feeling the kisses
a snowflake can bestow upon the skin
melts fear and gives life
and this is the truth
your presence gives from within

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

december drizzle(for Sagal)

today's rain
framed all of those pictures in my mind
i thought were set to flames
it fed my heart wine
mulled over with nutmeg and yesterdays
spent with fingers atop your hips
the rain spoke softly
taking a breather to let me aerate
words i should have said
from aortic chambers that needed the space
the chill matches my mood
and each step sends these thoughts of you
into open soil
maybe they'll grow up to be sunflowers
painted with your laughter
and nurtured with none of your sighs
today's rain tells me again how time flies.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

haiku 12.17.11

*for brownin'*

no cut of the moon
matches the glow of your eyes;
they light my dreams best.

cinnamon collarbone (for Sagal)

like footsteps of thieves
i let my kisses breathe
at one place upon your skin where the sun goes
to find its peace
not having my eyes gaze at it
is penance for our pain
a sweetness remains sealed in my mind
like cinnamon giving itself to the fiery embrace
of fresh ginger tea
should you begin to forget
the minutes we stole from immortality
look to that tender spot
two inches from your neck
where i felt paradise could be
right there along your collarbone
make that your home for memories of me.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

radiant lily

indulge me
let me make my fingers imitate
the silken strands of paintbrushes
and collect sugar from your skin
to color horizons that would clothe us
allow me to
make your freckles become bonfires
when my voice vibrates upon your neck
forgive me
if i treat your glee
like mineral water that i must bathe in daily
because you see
i've never met someone
who claims to walk with painful shadows
be so cloudless
especially within your eyes

Thursday, December 8, 2011

proximity to misery

call me crazy
call me too sensitive
because i live too close to a handgrenade of bitterness
that seems to want to explode near me
and my jacket can't take this flack
after everything else in the world
Gil said it
'home is where the hate is'
and i still can't figure out
his own towards me
silent needles
and cold shoulders
make for warm tears
and fists gone humid upon walls
punched in frustration
and dreams of happpiness
and peace across the evening table
go the route of Cain and Abel
and i'll let go of it in time
this sadness
that sits in the mouth like a rotten lime
and a little bit of care
expires in the wisps of regret
i'm tired of my proximity to his misery
blood doesn't call for ties
to be cut

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

haiku 12.6.11

your soft legs meeting
whisper to me with lips wet
and a dry smile

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

december blush

*for brownin'*

you've proven
that while you are no hothouse flower,
your bloom rises
only to greet the sincere.
love doesn't walk the way of the weak
into your garden
which explains just how sacred
that hidden country you call your trust is.
i've said that
summer sunsets could learn a thing or two
from the gleam just above your chin
which only deepens your cheeks' scarlet hue.
this is one precious thing
being in your company one should remember
you alone have the gift
that makes delicate flowers blush in December.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

peach blossom haiku

*for brownin'*

little did i know
your lips bore the sweet seeds that
peach blossoms grew from

moments of casual hate.

there are moments where, as a Black man in New York
City, you might as well be living back in the days
of Howard Beach and Bernie Goetz. today, was one of
those moments for me.

in the midst of the throng of tourists craning their
necks, families from the Island enjoying a day in the
big and broad city and other folks, here i was out and
about after a harried morning. as i got past West 46th
street, i found myself behind one guy and his girlfriend
who were taking their sweet time strolling in the middle
of the crosswalk. like any other New Yorker, i chose to
move quickly around them to get away from their absolutely
maddening pace. in the process, i wound up brushing past
the guy slightly. he was a white guy, older. possibly late
40's, with the look of an investment analyst trying to get
his groove back. his..*ahem* girlfriend was on the other
side, clutching a couple of small bags that probably cost
big bucks. i had my earphones on, but i did hear him say

"New York used to be a great place before the uppity
Negroes spoke up."


i stopped short, quickly turned around with my ears
burning hot and stared directly at the jerk. 'what
the FUCK did you just say?!!' i yelled. he sneered
slightly but was still somewhat shocked i heard him.
'go on, you heard what i said, fu-' he said before
i cut him off by taking two steps towards him. 'you
better walk off. i WILL lay you the fuck out!!!!"
i sized him up. i had him by a few pounds. but me
getting into a fight meant cops. and jail. not how
i want to end the year off. he's still snarling and
cursing at me. i hold my ground, trembling 'cause i
WANT to annihilate him. his girlfriend starts to
drag him away. 'i'm sorry!!', she says, yelling at
him to move. i turn and walk away, off to Penn
Station and home. but not far enough away from these
moments. not far away enough to wipe away the pain
and the absolute anger.

i realize that these moments, the moments of casual
hate are this country's gift to all people of color.
and all i can do is face them head on..and survive.
that's what we've always done. and hopefully one day
my children won't have these moments. and the world
will be better for it.

Friday, December 2, 2011

lost in her glen

*for brownin'*

it is your smile
lush and inviting like the countryside
that frames the shine of mornings as i wake up
it does not come
without rain
it is all the more soothing
because it has left behind pain
and just like the country glen
i feel that much better
seeing the cheeks that taught roses joy
simply grin
and i match that smile
losing myself in its incandescence
once again

Thursday, December 1, 2011

blackberry midnight ramble

my hands
gliding across the plains
of the back of your thighs
sound like those first moments
when the needle drops on a record
and soon
we'll sing songs that will make moonlight dance
and me
digging into your groove
will cause your sultry speech to skip
but that will just add more warmth
to the music we'll call
a blackberry midnight ramble.

music break: Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan

a little something different for you this go-round...Qawwali
or Sufi devotional music performed by possibly the best to
ever do it, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. enjoy!

thoughts on World AIDS Day.

today is World AIDS Day.

those four letters, i will admit, scare the living hell out
of me. granted, it is not the full out death sentence it once
but the HIV virus and AIDS are still running rampant across
the globe. we all know now how serious the illness is. but we
can't afford to be any less vigilant or aware. a moment's lapse
of awareness or judgement and your life is forever changed. we
all have our own stories about how AIDS entered their consciousness.
for me, it was way back in 1985 when i first started hearing the
rumblings about it in newspapers and on TV. it didn't fully hit
me until 1991 when two things happened. the first was Earvin
'Magic' Johnson told the world he was HIV positive. to see someone
in their prime be afflicted was shocking. especially someone
so full of life as he is. and it shattered all concepts that it
was a disease that only affected gay men. anyone was at risk. the
other instance showed me another side of those prejudices that still
lurk around HIV and AIDS. i remember that there was an uproar in
Queens Village because there were some 'concerned' parents(who were
so concerned that they never identified themselves publicly) who
who trying to block children from attending a public school in
the area. why? because they were recent immigrants from Haiti. and
unfortunately, Haitians were smeared with the idea that they
carried the HIV exclusively. utter bullshit.

today, have a moment of silence for those suffering with HIV and
AIDS and for those who've lost their lives or loved ones. for all
who might be reading this, be informed. protect yourselves. educate
yourselves. and most importantly, love yourselves...and each other.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

tender thighs haiku

i'm aware that your
legs makes denim sing; i just
want to learn the words.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

from the archives: biting wolves

it is hard to be human
among silent jackals
tough to be fair
as apathy erodes your mind
it's difficult to fight for what is good
when enmity and indifference are rewarded
but to live you simply grit your teeth
and endure
each bite.

slowing sunlight haiku

*for brownin'*

could loving me from
a distance make your eyes burn
less than your heart does?

Friday, November 25, 2011

desire and lightning haiku

unlike lightning bolts
i won't scar you but i can
fully charge your heart

Monday, November 21, 2011

vivid rose

*for brownin*

if you see
the sun's crest within my eyes
as i look at you and smile
it's only because
the vivid rose of your heart
and who am i
to refuse to listen
as you graciously open it to me?

Music Break: The Four Tops

here's a soulful and stirring gem to get the week, as short as
it is, started courtesy of a star group from Motown Records,
The Four Tops. enjoy!

chasing clouds away in cursive

it's 5 AM as i write this, and the creeping dread i've
been fighting has risen up to render sleeping impossible
for now. so i'm doing the only thing that makes sense for
me to do at this moment in time.

i'm writing to chase these clouds away.

over the past couple of years, i've been in a position
where i have had to remove my blinders and keep them off.
what do i mean by blinders? specifically, all of the things
that some folks use to get through life. hell, to get past
the DAY at times. things like over-indulging in shopping,
excessive gossip, drowning myself in reality television. i
found that to a degree, taking those blinders off allowed
me to see. it also exposed my sight to the searing, painful
smoke that comes with fear. i know that enlightened mean do
not fear. but it doesn't stop fear from swarming in. and in
truth, there's a climate that exists these days that somewhat
demands that you bring fear into your life and home or else
face its wrath. and what is its' wrath? indifference. apathy.
constant anxiety. tears. sadness. depression. the feeling that
you'll never get past where you are now. the feeling of being
left behind by life.

i've had my time amidst those clouds. i've recently come to
grips with the fact that i had more than likely been hit with
mild depression due to a number of things going on. and i know
now that i had to have my eyes feel that pain. my vision needed
to feel the burn. i needed to confront every bit of doubt in a
cold, calculated way and rely on the fact that i've been here
before. and i've driven into these clouds head on every time.
and managed to make it out just fine. just seeing these words
in front of me now, as the silver morning light edges up to the
windows tells me i will get through them again. and it's because
i'm allowing myself to see everything better now. i'm allowing
my eyes to not only see all that is, but all that could be. and
i'm not looking back like i used to.

if you're reading this, i thank you for it. if you're going
through something similar, i hope that you have the same
revelations i've had and can continue on without fear.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

haiku 11.21.11

his eyes looked for God
while their eyes searched for his soul
gone through gunshot wounds

supple velvet

you managed
to capture that sliver of cream
that sits on the sash across the waist of the sky
and i'm sure she does not mind you borrowing it
it goes well
with the cinnamon laden in your eyes
and while i've spoken at length
about the mysteries twinkling in your smile
the glow that makes me curious
is that which emanates
from the delicate sculpture of your thighs
they dictate a walk that's regal
and only the trusted know what secrets they hide
mysteries of supple velvet
made vivid by you
no wonder you make cotton sheets sigh.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

low words at high tide

loving you
was like sitting atop a boat
slipping slowly beneath the face of the ocean
and maybe she's the only one
who could make sense
of a woman who came to me for dollars
and found my words
broke change free in her heart

yes, loving you
made me a salt soon to join the sea
i didn't go quietly
i held onto ron anejo
quite a few of your kisses
the song of your satisfied sighs
it made nearly drowning in sadness
less of a burn to the eyes.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

facets of a beautiful fight.

aren't made for t-shirts
which sit on chests as conversation pieces
in happy hours made to hide the fact
that you've been disenchanted
because your magic doesn't work unless you've had a few
won't be caged in characters
with doubled meanings made bountiful
by the Gods' number
the only timeline that matters is right now
this is more than
building brands as hands are tied
with plastic bands
(silver bracelets are SO Selma and don't go well
with balsamic vinegar)
you can't sanitize an uprising
history has always behaved
like intestinal gas
and the abdominal burn is the concern
not that things will change
but how will YOU adapt
there's no equivalent
to hearing a grip tighten on a nightstick
and knowing that subdued rattle
can come before a snake's bite
Alex Jones and the rest of the fear junkies
will not save you from their compound
where they live with dollars and donuts
but they expect you to survive
on conspiracies and soy
and the fight needed to ensure
the generation after them won't sleep
are never pretty
because pretty can always chip and fade
and despite what they tell you
picking sides in a firefight
doesn't mean you won't get hit
but they are beautiful
most struggles from the heart
often are.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

haiku 11.15.11

i want you so bad
i could fuck away those long
miles between us

for the weary moments of a struggle

everyone wants to be Che
but few want to be Rosa
you want to rage against machines
but let a voice on a phone
tell you where to get your next espresso fix
or quote 'The Matrix' as a reason
you don't have to the voice to cry out against pain
there comes a point
where you're sick and tired of being sick and tired
and then you get sick of those
telling you to be inspired
while pushing you to the front
like Saudis did Egyptians once
change comes in many currencies
but none more valuable
that a mind made beautiful enough
to cause chains to rust
and crowns to gleam
dreams only live
when you're fully awake
and fires that free do not begin
unless you accept
that you're only one flame
and that you burn
in your own way and on your terms

what firestorm will you cause today?

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

blueberry tea and her arms

still wishing
for the stillness found
in your kitchen when we let our hearts
breathe next to each other
as sunlight mixed with New England frost
framed the morning
i think you've managed
to embed your sultry grin
into my chest
and my nostrils
still fill with brown sugar and yearning
holding you
has become as necessary as walking
and that's why my mind so often
travels to regain that stillness
steeped in blueberries and your arms.

Monday, November 7, 2011

smoke before the thunder. (for joe frazier.)

they tried to make you many things, Joe
everything you could think of Joe
but like all champions
you dictated your terms
with fists that burned
they tried to make you out to be dumb
to make you just a foil
but anyone born under palmettos and hard gazes
crumbles doubt
with fists that brought thunder
you shocked the world
along with Ali
forty one rounds
that stitched themselves with a corner man's hands into history
and made death a reluctant spectator
when the heat of battle in a ring in Manila
saw you willing to still fight blind
they called you Uncle Tom
not knowing you made monkeys out of all who scorned you
there is no more bitterness
no more razor blades to swallow to hide pain
the city of brotherly love
named you theirs
and the world
names you a champion eternal, Joe
as a man who's smoke
brought a thunder that shook gods
and humbled the loudest of men.

Friday, November 4, 2011

lemongrass morning

this morning
like all the others that have passed
walks in with its own sadness
i got too used
to hearing your voice
in concert with that of birds
and words between us
steeped like lemongrass tea
each sip
makes this day somewhat easier.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

being your own away team.

sometimes, you tend to do things better on the road.

i've previously made analogies to how the creative mind
is similar to a shark in the ocean. they need to move
constantly to survive. those out on the corners, no matter
what they do, are of the same mind. 'you gotta walk/'cause
i walk as i talk."(c)dead prez

being blessed to travel as i have from an early age, i've
gotten so many benefits from these adventures. and as i've
gotten older, i can honestly say that the biggest benefit
thus far has been having the ability to let my mind think
and breathe that much more clearly and freely. case in point:
i was in DC a couple of weeks ago and i was able to focus
on having a good time and still be able to approach certain
things i was dealing with back home from a better perspective.
it was like stepping out of my body and watching things
unfold on a giant movie screen.

and another aftereffect to that is, travel time to a destination
has always managed to light a fire within me. probably because
it's a block of time where i don't have to undergo the steady
amount of multi-tasking i usually go through on a day to day
basis. i do take the time to write, and review more in those
blocks of time. i've actually written articles and essays as

so for all of you writers out there, next time you've got a
lengthy bit of travel ahead, carry a journal along with the
bestseller you may have on your eReader.

six word story: Ben Ali's lesson

hearts wanting freedom always destroy machines.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

six word story: thoughts during the evening prayer.

Inquisitiveness now made Shireen's veil invisible.

Monday, October 31, 2011

six word story: backstage burlesque

*trying a new series out here, writing a story in six words. i'd
love your feedback!!!*

Cheryl cringed, wiping herself with singles.

quiet snowflake haiku

snowflakes become flames
licking my skin, walking in
a winter unsure

Sunday, October 30, 2011

the shine of your midnight eyes

i dream of the pieces of time
that shine like your eyes
my arms
remember your ample figure
that few pears can match
i often think
of the serenity of honey
and how it lives contentedly in your skin
and i did not forget
the smokiness of your voice
that could coat a room in jasmine and longing
to think that this all lies
in concert with the shine of your midnight eyes
it makes me feel
like diamonds may be overrated.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

posers of prose

i want to devote this post to one of my pet peeves
that's been gnawing at me as of late. and that peeve
is...*mighty drum roll*...POSERS.

one of the things as a an
should hold dear is the idea of being true to oneself.
no one should ever try to be what they're not anyway.
you'll get nothing but hurt, and a big old bowl of
emptiness in the end. but it seems that nowadays,
to be a poser of sorts is the 'in' thing. it's actually
celebrated. and someone you know, is either perpetrating
a fraud or helping someone do it. as it relates to
writing, i've always prided myself on who is true to
themselves and their craft and who is really just
selling a book of wolf tickets. because i've come
across a couple of people who will swear up and down,
'oh yeah, i'm a writer!' and then it turns out they
haven't done much with their craft.

now i'm not saying that i'm expecting everyone to have
a novel, been published heavily, or gotten huge write-ups
in periodicals of the day. but i'm tired of coming
across the posers. those who copy other people's work
and pretend it's theirs. those who want to write only
because their half-assed celebrity awards them a book
deal and a ghostwriter to make them appear more 'normal'.
the men and women who think that by sleeping with a
writer that they magically gain those skills by some
sort of transference through sex. enough with that

who am i to make such a statement? i'm someone who has
been writing since i was 8. i'm someone who has had the
power of the written word help me get to places some
would never had me see. i'm someone who had to use words
to fight, to love and to heal when i was too weak or too
weary to do those things on my own. i know what lies in
the power of my craft. and i would never belittle it by
such actions as i described above. if you're reading this,
i believe you know how i feel. and if you've been doing
what i described above, KNOCK THAT S$#@ OFF and stop
being a poser of prose. you're casting shadows on those
who shine brightly.

Friday, October 28, 2011

among the comets that sleep

i'm passionate
about your shoes
dangling like participles
and me being proper
i sneak only a few furtive glances
but they dance
around my ears in counterclockwise form
when you let me
enter a forest that's more warm
than the hands of deserts
the second skin of silk you wear
will be the softness that frames my face and speech
my desire dangles
like your shoes do
as we flirt
and set our minds
to love among the comets that sleep.

haiku 10.26.11

you know your words cut
when you feel your soul ache as
you read them aloud

Thursday, October 27, 2011

rita's haiku

she smoked butts freely
not knowing she was burning
her life to the end

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

brown eyes haiku

i took the sand from
her eyes and made an island
to be stranded on

Monday, October 24, 2011

haiku 10.24.11

*for brownin'*

caressing your chin
is akin to holding the
warmth of a full moon

Thursday, October 20, 2011

whisper of a september wind.

*for brownin*

i have discovered
a secret to your smile
that perhaps you do not want shared.
so i will only say
that the closest thing to its rise
is the whisper of a September wind
across the face
as i lie down in a field
of wheat and golden blades of grass
and cast my eyes to the stars
to remember the brilliance
when i saw it last.

shell-shocked in Sirte

the glades of Lockerbie
don't shine any brighter
Tripoli cheers
while we view a strongman
bloodied at the end of his years
dragged like spotted buck behind a pickup
media outlets that cried foul
at BlackHawks down
parade dead bodies around claiming patriotism
too many 'isms' makes me yearn to burn my own
yes Libya has their freedom
but you can't help but wonder
if their countr's soul is on regulated loan?