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.