Categories
Poetry Police Brutality Social Justice Violence

Strang(er) Fruit

Strange fruit, now covering the streets Juice bleeding black, dripping at my feet Black bodies dropping with each new day Quickly becoming the amerikkkan way Blatant bleaching of the stars & stripes Profiles to fit all stereotypes Cries for justice fall on deaf ears We be the victims of their fears Here is the fruit […]

Categories
Awareness Black Family Blackness Parenting

Open Letter From a Mother

Child, there is greatness in your lineage I won’t trace each and every root for you they’re too nappy Lord knows this tree been grown in some shit soil beady with miseducation southern fried and fatty but there was greatness here still is set in North Carolina cotton fields we had no business breaking mason […]

Categories
Black Family Slavery Writing

A Slave’s Christmas Story

Solomon Northup was a free black man from Minerva, New York who married the love of his life on Christmas Day in 1829. Northup was born in July of 1808 to a freed slave, Mintus, and a “woman of color” (reportedly one-quarter African-American, and three-quarters European) whose name is unknown. He was raised on the […]

Categories
Art Awareness Black Lives Matter Black-on-Black Crime Blackness Empowerment Film Masculinity Social Justice Stereotypes Urban Life

Why We Need Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq

It’s not wise to underestimate how movies can shape a young person’s life. Twenty years ago, when I was a teenager, Tales From the Hood played a tremendous role in my growing up. The movie, through an infusion of horror and humor, showed several stories dealing with racism and Black men growing up in urban […]

Categories
Art Beauty Nature Personal Essay Solidarity Writing

Special Delivery: The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree

Something out of the ordinary happened on Black Friday. I was actually in a shopping mall, shopping for something I needed. I had every intention of joining my friends at REI in “opting out” of the day after Thanksgiving spending frenzy, but there were a few critical items I needed for my next Joy Trip. […]

Categories
Fiction

Gemini Boy (A Fictional Short Story)

Bernard McMain, now known as inmate 999341, spent most of the night grasping for the memory of touch; his mother’s touch, to be exact. She had written him for the last time a month ago. “I don’t wish to burden you with this news, but I’m dying. I’ve known for a while and hoped against […]

Categories
Awareness Black Hair Black Women Blackness Coming-of-Age Identity Self-Care

Searching For Identity In the Realm of Black Hair

A few weeks ago, I stepped away from the kinky/curly hair community for a basic haircut. I’d re-entered the space with an understanding of how I revel in the fragmentation of the African-American community. While I question what it means to be united with other African-Americans, I used my hair to play up my self-worth. […]

Categories
Identity Personal Essay Writing

30 For 30: How Writing Changed the Gameplan

When I was seventeen, I already had a plan for the next twenty years of my life. There were goals I’d set for myself and being focused was mandatory in order to succeed in those objectives. Though I was young and mostly in the beginning stages of my knowledge, I had a strong sense of […]

Categories
Police Brutality

A Few Words About the Police

The fallout following Mike Brown’s murder is a couple of days old now and I’ve seen many give their opinions of various topics related to this heinous crime including racism, classism, the ineptness of the NAACP, the backlash behind President Obama’s official statement, respectability politics and the role of police in our community/police brutality. The […]

Categories
Awareness Forgiveness Relationships Self-Care

On Regrets: A Tribute

[For my Sagittarian Fairy Godwriters, Mr. Carter (b. 12/4) and Ms. Didion (b. 12/5). For me. So I may never forget.] During a dark autumn in my undergraduate years , I wrote in the top margin of a composition notebook page: No answer to these trick questions / No time, shit stressin’ / My life […]