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Monday, April 11, 2022

Credo

Christianity

I was baptized in a Lutheran Church

Went to a Baptist church as a child because my mom made me

Went to Catholic Church as a teenager because she hated it 

(I was so Catholic I became the President of Young Catholic Students Association)

Went to a non-denominational church in my early 20s

And by my mid-20s, I was so religious I had been on multiple short-term missionary trips and trained for a year to do long-term missions

However, somewhere on that path

I realized there was too much I didn’t agree with and became non-religious

I am 35 now and most people in my life assume I am still a Christian

I never correct them

You always have to explain the most to the people who matter the least.


Islam


Islam and I hold hands and drink tea often

Our meeting was traumatic

We’ve made peace with it


We started seeing one another before I turned 5 and it has remained a constant presence in my life

I’m aware this makes some people a tad uncomfortable

I honestly don’t care

I’ve been through more than anyone ever should 

And if Islam is one of the few gifts I got from that then I am okay with it 

It is not a thing that needs to be explained 

It is not a thing that is good or bad

It is a thing that just is.


***

When it comes to religion

The people who love me the most

(On both sides of the religious spectrum)

Nod and look the other way

It’s a love language 

An acceptance 

That my being alive is reason enough

Reason enough

Reason enough

To leave me alone

They know I always eventually tell…

When I’m ready.

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Sutured

A kiss

For old time’s sake

For what was

For what is

For what will never be

For the things I won’t tell my heart

When it asks after you

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

CP: The Romance of Getting Over You

 Chapter One of My Life. 

I walk down the street. There's a deep hole in the sidewalk. I fall in. 

I am lost. I am helpless. It isn't my fault. It takes forever to find a way out.


Chapter Two. 

I walk down the same street. There's a deep hole in the sidewalk. I pretend I don't see it. I fall in again. I can't believe I'm in the same place! But it isn't my fault. And it still takes a long time to get out.


Chapter Three. 

I walk down the same street. There's a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it there. I still fall in. It's a habit! My eyes are open. I know where I am. It is my fault. I get out immediately.


Chapter Four. 

I walk down the same street. There's a deep hole in the sidewalk. I walk around it.


Chapter Five. 

I walk down a different street.


Portia Nelson, 'There's a Hole in My Sidewalk: The Romance of Self-Discovery'

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Black History Month, or something like it

Every year, I shatter my dreams and plans in a bid to find more freedom. I'm convinced that dreaming and planning have never been mutually exclusive so I dream and I plan and I shatter and dream and plan and find some freedom, lose some freedom, shatter and start again. 

I am dedicated to a lifetime of enjoyment. I’m not really dedicated to loving or to social justice because these 2 bleed out of me, naturally, daily. So I have to fight for my freedom and enjoyment because loving well and fighting for equity in a White, male, Christian-centered world is exhausting. Therefore, I dream and I plan and I find freedoms I never knew I could have, and I bask in the glory of all that they are. 

I am Black and woman, Black and coily-haired, Black and immigrant-but not really, Black and diasporic-but not exactly, Black and bisexual, Black and asexual, Black and hoe, Black and ethical, Black and educated, Black and polyglot, Black and traveler, Black and you-are-not-allowed-to-discriminate-in-front-of-me, Black and art-lover, Black and I-can't-do-life-with-you-if-you-don't-cook, Black and non-religious, Black and happy, Black and so much more.

So many have died for me to enjoy the liberties that I have today and I refuse to let them down... So, I dream and I plan towards a lifetime of more freedoms, daring adventures and all of the enjoyment my soul can ramp up.


***Inspired by the Black and… Project by my fellow Peace Corps Evacuee, Chenise Calhoun

*I write about travel here

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Idiosyncrasy

  • At various stages of my life

Me: I’m not dating right now

  • Responses from men tend to fall into a variation of the following 4 exaggerated categories, some mix and match but most stick to one

Man 1: Fuck you! 

Man 2: That’s ‘cause you haven’t had this dick, I can change your life! 

Man 3: But I love you.

Man 4: Okay, so, I got us a table for 2 at this exclusive restaurant. I bought you a car, a house, and an island… I can get you into heaven if you want.

** 3 and 4 tend to go together. 2, 3 and 4 sometimes end up as 1 but occasionally, they slide into 5 


  • Only one man has given a mostly okay response from the get go. This response is not perfect because when I start dating, I feel guilty for not letting them know… especially if they are on my social media and can tell that I’m seeing someone


Man 5: Okay but please let me know when you start dating. You’re really cool and I would love to be with you.


  • In my 34 years, 11 months and 15 days on earth, only one man has respected my autonomy and given the only appropriate response to that statement


Man 6: Thanks for letting me know. It’s great that you know what you want and I wish you the best.

Saturday, January 1, 2022

35

My birthday is on the 27th and I’m not sure why we are already thinking about it but The Nap Ministry told me to stop giving away my deepest thoughts on an app designed to make a rich, White man richer so… here we are. 

Turning 35 halfway through a solitude quest  is definitely one of the most laughable ordeals of my midlife eccentricities.  This is the first time in about 10 years where I haven’t traveled abroad for my birthday. It’s the first time in my life I’m not having a party of sorts. It’s also the first time in my life I’m planting roots. This Lost Boy is working on making Austin her headquarters and it’s as calming as it’s destabilizing. My life is smaller than it’s ever been, bigger than it’s ever been, I’m happy, at peace and couldn’t ask for more.


I know this is the part where I’m supposed to blab about the next year but the wheels are in motion for my near future so instead, here’s what I want to do when I  retire - and can go to jail without worrying about how it will affect my life. 


- Volunteer several days a week at a local library/bookstore/garden/farm… Preferably if I own it and if I’m doing something with kids, teaching them things they won’t learn in a class room (think banned books on history, culture and inclusivity).


- Terrorize my government officials with a little more umph about civil rights and never miss a protest for said civil rights.


- Go on at least one international cruise each year once it becomes medically inconvenient to travel the regular way.


- Become a pot-head.



If you want to send me a gift, I’ll take hand-written snail mail, a sewing machine, a delivery from Naija Snack Box and Cold, Hard Cash. Tnx! PO Box 1051. Austin, Texas. 78767

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

No.Mad

 I was torn out of my mother's womb before I was ready for the world
I wasn't done swimming
I wanted one last day in a utopia that was all mine
And her's
She and I
Together
Connected by nature
Biology
Love
But they cut me out
Because they thought I wanted to hurt her
Myself
Us
And in the process
They cut out a part of us
And never put us back together quite right
And it hurt
It still hurts
So
I have spent my life not lingering
Because I never want to overstay my welcome
To be cut out
To be told "you need to leave"
I have managed to become a Lost Boy
In a world where I have managed to find love everywhere I've ever been
(and I've been a lot of places)
It's a wild wonder
But no mistake at all
So
Don't ask me to stay
Staying makes me restless
Makes my spine itch
My eyes dry
My feet sore
My heart wonder
When you'll have too much of me
When you'll want me gone

Don't ask me to stay
The wild is calling out to me
Begging me to return
Pleading to be explored and conquered

Don't ask me to stay
You can't tame a restless soul
Keep me too long and 
I'll eat you from the inside out
Lick your bones and
Walk away hungry

Don't ask me to stay
I can't hear you
Over the sound of my footsteps
Walking away from you
And you
Again
And again

Stop asking me to stay
I can do bad all by myself.