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i'm black so...

This is understood

A lie is only a lie when you believe the truth

They don't believe they owe us

Let us not waste time

Again

Defining the lines of equality

Again

Let's discuss what is right 

Color outside the lines and boxes now

Nothing ever being enough

No longer an excuse for doing nothing at all

Empty apologies evaporate into thin air

Tears soak our Mother's pillows each night

Save your thoughts on the matter

Your hearts are poor

Fill your hands with more

Until your arms and stock can not carry

Then add some more of what you've had

Until we cry Grace

Until we cry Mercy

For you to understand

To be Civil is not a cry for War

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Girl Praying
i'm black so...

I pray for my country

Like I pray for families

with sick children

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unto death.

I want him to make promises he can't keep

Never to take his eyes off me

Never go away

Never let go

Run faster towards me

Crash into me but don't break

Don't hurt 

Me

Need only my wanting

Hear only my cries

Take my words

Let them drip into your mouth

Then out

My God

Have I done unto you death

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loneliness calls me.

I don't answer​

But she leaves me messages

I miss you

Don't you miss me?

I know you miss crying on quiet Sunday afternoons

We'd smile by evening

Looking forward to Monday to try it all over again

Who knows

Who knew

I'd miss you

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these girls got something special.

​I like being by myself

I miss it

I often hide in daydreams of when I was alone

Before marriage and the lightning strike of a child

I mourn the passing of possibilities in my life

I remember the anticipation of maybe being homeless or becoming something

Like something better than this

Is there anything better than this?

I find myself pushing my daughter away

Before she realizes I’m not everything I tell her to be

She’s beginning to take notice in those times when I’m not

Kindness, Cleanliness, Ladylike, Productive, Patient, Giving

I make no excuse for it.

I see in her everything I hate about me and I love it

Fiercely defending her fire cries about having it her way as the epitome of passion

The something that’s missing

She has

What will catapult her beyond the woes of her generation

 

She’s going to save me.

 

Today, I was hiding in bed under the covers

After shooing her back into the living room several times

I overheard her telling her Daddy to buy these girls ponies.

 

That’s what she calls us, these girls.

 

Some nights after the three of us crawl into bed

She’ll say, “Daddy, these girls did hard work today”

That basically means we survived an argument or two

Wasting expensive Melissa and Doug paint

Mixing all the colors together

I could’ve just bought black

Or cleaning up

Which I make her start, but I end up finishing

 

So that it’s done right.

 

Sometimes, I have to beg her to let me go to the gym

I say, you don’t want mommy to be fat forever, do you?

And with every fiber in her

to love me

to keep me

She cries, Yes I do! You’re beautiful!

 

She validates my bullshit in that way.

 

The other day she was laying in my bed watching Frozen for the fifth time that morning

When I came into the room she looked up from her tablet

She told me that she’d really like to be alone for awhile

It didn’t hurt me

I just realized that yeah, these girls got something special

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yours truly.

In a breath

Things

Everything to be exact

To Everyone

Everyday

Every way
Impossible

Trying not to run out of ways before days

Afraid of a time when everyone is no one you know

Anymore

Missing her in the mirror

Thinking of her

Old self

That pretty bitch

Wishing you could slap insecurities away from her mind

In love

Careful not to scratch her face with your unkempt nails

Rest your tired head on her shoulder

She smells so good

Her neck is soft and sweet

Hating not being with her

Making love with her

Yours truly,

Their Superpower

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all, all, all, all...

"All in together, any kind of weather. 

I see a teacher looking out the window.

Ding, dong a fire bell.

January, February, March, April, May..."

Poppin' sweet gum through cherry glossed lips

A quarter for a sour pickle and a peppermint stick

Candy lady snapping peas on the porch

Yellin' 'Don't be acting fast

When the little girls cuss

Ponytails pulled so tight eye are smiling

Fresh white Keds

Ankle socks with cotton balls on the back

Jumping off the swings and the Merry Go Round

Double Dutch in the street

Singing SWV Weak until fireflies butterfly

Brown skin glows into bronze

Hot and sticky

Sweet as daddy's BBQ sauce

Playing nasty with the boys

Hiding hickies under a candy necklace

Hey, Summer

Ask yo Mama if you can spend the night

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it might be deep.

Wouldn’t it be a trip if I found out that the white man in my veins was trying to keep me down

Having good hair is cool and alright

Weighing down my eyes

Separated my spirit from all of Earth

No longer can I sense the storm or feel vibrations

Pulled my soul from the stars

Their reflection dance sparkles across the river

I think there may be gold down there

I want to jump but something is telling me don’t

I want to walk from this place to another

Barely holding onto their savior’s hand

Can’t look myself in the face in all honesty

For shame

I can’t see the God in me

I hear all these things about myself

My people that I don’t want to believe

But I watch them one after another fall all around me

Into the river

Not the sea

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out of this world.

Perhaps there are better places to be

Maybe they are not telling us that the air is clearer on the moon

New fruits could be sweeter

Could there be a deeper testament of love or a darker shade of blue

I am not sure

No science has proven exactly so

or not

But when I look into the sky it is much different from gazing at the weight of the ocean

There's a connection

The gates have long swung open 

All are welcome

It's not like you 

not like me

not like here

Better

Between Heaven and Earth

Where God can still see us

Mine and yours

We are closer to the Sun for now and heat blankets us so heavy

Fogging our sights of paradise

Not sold here, but free from this world

Whether it goes ignored or adored

It heals us, and it can kill us

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if you should ever love a black man.

You must know there is no peace until death

And maybe still not even then

Whether you call him sweet lover or son

In this world he has always been a man​

The safest place for him is not in your arms

Inside your womb

Your heart

but in your memories he lay away from pain

You love him deeply while wishing he were never born

Cry every year on his birthday in fear of what it really means

Senses outweigh celebration

You have nothing to give 

Hiding in your secret place

Under the radar

Passing his obstacles

Courses in darkness and danger

May he be wise

May he be safe

Plead with God to make him one that is beyond all that we see

All that we know is there waiting

About him

Cover him in blessings

Like food sure to spoil

You want him

Even when everyone in the world says you shouldn't

There is no need

For just a crust of loving a black man brings sickness to the heart

I guarantee

If you ever love a black man

Hope that only greatness impress him

Pray his supernatural is real

Care less if he cheats or lies

Did he survive?

Is he here today?

Tomorrow for him may not be

Gone but never forgotten

To you, my deepest sympathy

Thoughts and prayers

if you should ever love a black man

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a rose and a feather.

A love story of sorts

Fluffy petals firm, soft and fragrant

Strangely sometimes go unseen

Wither with grace

from beginning to end

Very few can knowingly standby and witness the beauty in every stage of a dying rose

Thorns separate fine hairs

The wind blows you away

To watch a feather sway in any direction but never bend or break

Admirably amuses

A rose stands still

Waiting to be watched

Then missed

It’s curious to think when you see a feather

If it is coming or going

But certainly, here or in memory though oddly paired

More than romantic

There is something special about a rose and a feather

Together.

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at the funeral.

Play love songs
If I were ever anything greatly
I was in love with you
So, play love songs
It won’t mean much to me then
My only wish now is that you will hear me in each and every song
Let our spirits dance
at the funeral to a love song

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nothing sweet.

Have a cup of tea

Just add a pinch of good fat

Take off ten this week

By my math could be 40 by Spring

From here to there

It’s all bad

Folded hanging down

It’s all natural

So why not have a cup of tea

With lighting and tights

Suckers for teens

Pull in

Chest out

Angles just right

No surgeries

No hunger

No human need

Greater than being fake beautiful

Nothing is worse than being ugly

Skinny is a talent and a skill

Through consistency or insanity

Have a fucking cup of tea

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i don't believe.

Even if you look very close

you may find it hard to see

between pimps, pastors, prostitutes and the parishioners

I don’t believe the differences are very many

fancy suits with diamond rings

catch your eye

One way or another

Throughout the blocks

Cadillacs Black

Continentals Navy Blue

Pull up to the same spot

Pointy toe alligator shoes

Women come running

Peach Pie and Pocketbook

Hugs and Kisses

Shouting Our Father, Sweet Daddy!

And you shall be saved

They would die just to see his feet

His flesh

Him bleed

I don’t know if you know like I know

There are them that dance and us who see

Seated in the back

clap on 1 and 3

Having no gold or honey

Give

But never enough for those in need

The rhythm and the bass gather together

Rocks you back and forth

Sentiments draw tears to your eyes

They tell you, you can only walk on one side

Head down

On tippy toes

Imply that you've learned the rules, you know this song

The show is beautiful

Fans, fur and feathers and sometimes wine

When he calls me to his alter

I am never moved

Though they jump when he says dance

The people are tired

They are not happy

I don’t believe

I believe in God

I don’t worship greed

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i am not mad at your white girl.

I’m mad at us

I’m mad that I was raised to love and protect you

And you don’t

I’m mad that I’m obligated

And you’re not

No matter what I will continue to birth you

She has my lips, my ass and my hips

But you erase me

Little brown girls pray for praises, learn to straighten hair, contour faces and waiting

Little brown boys feel jaded, learn not to be color, conquer color and your hurt faded

And love is love is love

So if your soul connects then good for her

But we wonder

to what

So forgive me if I stare a moment too long without a smile

I’m ok

But just ok

Black is ok

Brown is ok

But just ok

Ok, there is always better

And I can’t not want you

You are what the world has been trained to look out for

And I strip down

I peel away pride for your liking

Shrink into the corners of your majesty

Hoping I don’t cast a shadow that frightens you

I jump in front of all of your fires screaming in your honor

But I am not brave

They wear our skin for fashion

But I am not pretty

I have studied long and hard

But I am not smart

I have more than you

But I am nothing

I replace a man with a meal

We argue

We don’t talk much

But I am not mad at your white girl

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i wanna be like that white man.

Kevin is a douchebag who thinks he knows everything

Keith knows what he knows

Keith wears jeans that he’s had for 30 years with a white dress shirt

Keith rolls his sleeves up to his elbows

Keith only wears jeans when he travels for work

Keith works in sales

Keith goes to tradeshows

Keith sells a tiny piece of metal that helps machines run smoother, longer

Keith says that with a serious look on his face

Keith holds up the piece between his thumb and forefinger

Pinky finger up

Keith only sells one or two a year

Keith says after the next sell he’s gonna go ahead and pay off the mortgage on the summer house

Keith sits with his ankle over his knee

Keith twists his wedding ring around his finger over and over again

Becca hates that

Keith hates jewelry

Keith doesn’t laugh out loud

Keith turns red

Keith opens his mouth with a smile and pulls his chin in

Keith just shakes his head and says

Yes, yes that’s a funny one

Keith doesn’t know why life has been so easy

Keith is not handsome

Keith has cheated on his wife

Keith went to community college

Keith pays his kids tuition at the university

Keith doesn’t get asked many questions

Keith thinks about sports a lot

Keith reads magazines about boats, and golf

Keith eats dinner at 6

Keith doesn’t vote

Keith goes to bed at 11

Keith doesn’t have friends

Keith lives

Everyone knows Keith

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an ode to blue. 

Dearest Dark Blue,

Shield me from hurt that lingers for a lifetime

Harm and danger flying under the sun

the heat of fire like stars in the land

I am darker than you are blue

See my hands

Mother pressed the backs of my hands into her cheek when I was not well

Warmth heals the spirit

See Mother’s love on my hands

I am no longer ill

I run now

The light behind the clouds is love

You don't have to shine on me

Look above my head and see the light

Light is yours too

Under your silver and leather

Shaking fear from my shoulders

Even from here I see the veins in your arms are green

You’re not who I thought you were

Most endearing

You looked for me

You love me too

Press your shoulder against my back

Follow my fall

With stone around our minds

You hold me

Breathe warmth on my neck

Reassuring me that I’m not going to make it

I believe when you say it

Sealing it with warmth

I close my eyes until I feel no more               

I believe you love this part too

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addict.

It’s Good

I’ll take good

Hell

Good enough is better than nothing at all

Hold out my hands and see what falls in my lap

There’s better

Good is something

More than I deserve

I’m hungry

I’ll take only a taste

Soul still cries for more but I’m alright

I’m good

A dead rose is still a rose

Stories to tell before crumbling

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ribbons.

I wear ribbons in my hair

All the time

A lot

Mostly at the bottoms, but

sometimes at the top

Thick cotton ones, look as sweet as pink cotton candy

Satin for special occasions

Easter

In the Christmas Play

Everyone says how nice my ribbons are 

On Sundays

Never on Tuesdays

Tuesday is my favorite day of the week

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oh mother.

Fed me bread and water

Held my head up

Scratching through my hair

Eyes burned

Ears well learned

Touched in places

Father is gone

Steal away my sons

My brother hates me

Pushed hands to erase our names

Acquired taste for teardrops

Belly full on emptiness and agony

Fingers dripping jeweled in my ruby heart

Sing your song with my soul

Stand to your right

I am your first today and still the last

Going nowhere at full speed

Laughing

Oh, Mother America

I love you

Like you love me

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pink chocolates.

Sweet white cake

grape jelly and chocolate frosting

Holy hymns sung soprano

Solos on an old piano

White gloves and peppermint Sundays

The sun always comes out on Sunday

You can wear a pretty dress

Ruffle socks

Nice shoes

You sit with me

Close your legs and cross your ankles

Smile

Show your pretty teeth

And you, my sweet, may have 3 pink chocolates

Smell like baby powder from the bottom of your pocketbook

Held tightly in my hand

One now

One after benediction

One for the ride home

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missing.

Mind spinning

Searching from under one metal rack to the next

I can't see my Mommy’s shoes

Heart racing

A few thoughts too many

Not one will help me

Did she lose me

Did she leave me

Hello, I am lost

I can’t figure out her smile

Was she looking for me

Was I returned

Or was I found

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