Honour Thy Mother

Happy Mother’s Day to every mother who has ever lived. We honour you. This post is dedicated to my mother, who has built, raised and held this family together by herself for all these years.

By the end of my life cycle I will probably be able to name many women who have been ‘motherly figures’ to me throughout my life. Who have guided me, loved me, opened their homes, hearts and lives to me, just to see me grow. The woman you call mom didn’t necessarily have to give birth to you but regardless of your circumstance, on a day like today we honour all of these women who have and will continue to sacrifice, who they are and what they have so that we can have a better life.

It took me about 18 years to finally realize that, “a better life” was the intent my mother had for raising me. Harsh tones, strict rules and discipline were what I couldn’t see passed for awhile. Growing up people tell you “you’ll understand when you’re older” and that was the case for me. As you grow older, friendships start to get messy and dissolve faster than ever, you start to enter the “real world” where people don’t care too much if you burn yourself eating soup or go out with ashy hands and coal in your eyes. I grew up to finally learn that in every conflict, hard time and low point there were two things that remained constant, God of course and my mother. I never appreciated her input for most of my life because I had that bratty attitude which came with that one back-talk line “You just don’t understand me”.  To this day, I don’t listen to everything she says to me and our phone calls sometimes end shorter than they should but I’ve grown to realize  that there is nobody looking out for you more or better than your mother. You may not be able to see it right now to appreciate it but I hope you do before it’s too late. Show some honour to all the mothers in your life today.

All the single mothers
Now put your hands up!
A huge thank you to the single mothers, who I wouldn’t consider are playing both parts but who in my opinion are completely dominating at being the best mothers they can be.

Mother, you had and will forever have the responsibility of raising me but I will always have the responsibility of honouring you. Thank you for all you do.

A poem dedicated to my mother.

I wonder if she hears it in my voice
Can she sense my distress miles away
Even when I neglect her questions and redirect her attention
When I underplay my emotions
And distance myself from affection
Does my voice shake
Can she feel the tremble in my hands over the phone and reach out to hold me
Only to realize she’s alone
But, it scares her more to think I’m just as lonely
In the night when I wake in terror, do her nightmares mimic mine
She lies awake at night
Wondering if my pillow softly caresses my head                                                                         If my back, curves into my bed
She lies awake at night
Not knowing if tomorrow she can still love me alive
Tomorrow is only a day away but in that day
Her hand no longer guides me across crosswalks
Defends my misconduct
Feeds me
Clothes me
Leads me
Makes sacrifices to support me
Tomorrow is only a day away but in that day
This world can lead me astray
Grow me up faster than it took her to raise me
Day after day, I grew up without her permission
While she was latched to the feeling of awe watching my first steps
I soon began to run
Too fast for her to chase
Grew too big for her to carry
I’m sorry, that tomorrow came so early

 

 

 

Advertisements

Unapologetically Black and Poetic

Sometimes I feel like I fall into the black female stereotype a little too often. I don’t mean to and I don’t mean not to. I’m loud, bossy, I clap my hands sometimes, (only because it’s the scarborough coming out) and I have opinions that are usually visible on my face. But, I feel that without my permission, especially in public settings, I can be placed under the loud black girl with an attitude label. I definelty won’t deny that this label exists and that there are black women who fall under it but it’s frustrating that as a whole, black females are generally represented this way. With any stereotype comes the distortion of reality and truth. Every black girl is not the same, just upon a first glance don’t assume that’s the case. This loud, speak my mind type of confidence I have is what has greatly contributed to my character and how I express my creativity and my poetry.

A friend once told me that she is always so shocked and amazed  when I perform because of how eloquent I speak. At first, I was offended, like aren’t I that articulate all the time??  I guess not, but as I began to reflect, my poetry has been that outlet where I do channel more of my serious, “intellectual” and smooth-spoken self. For the most part,  I can accredit my attitude and energy to giving my writing it’s personality, if I wasn’t as outspoken as I am in public, how could I expect to be as bold in my poetry.  When I speak, I communicate out of passion and enthusiasm, I speak to the fullness of emotions. To many it may seem ghetto or extra but I think there is a fine line that I try not to cross in terms of being disrespectful in that manner. For anybody who knows me, they know I am full of “oomph” and that translates into the liveliness I try to bring to life for myself and for others. As much as it would be ideal to distance myself from this “negative representation”, I don’t plan on it. However, I do plan to show people how unapologetically black and poetic  I am and how I won’t allow people’s perception about how black I’m being, stop me from achieving or being myself.

I hope many of you out there will find enough confidence to embrace attributes society doesn’t alway shed the best light on. Work off of your strengths and continue to work on your weaknesses, who knows how they will balance each other out! Don’t apologize for not being like everybody else, be an individual and represent yourself!

Happy National Poetry Month

Excuse my manners, we’re 6 days into April and I’ve completely neglected to mention that it’s NATIONAL POETRY MONTH!

Happy National Poetry Month to you all!

This National Poetry Month marks 18 years for the League of Canadian Poets and 20 years for the League of American Poets and their dedication to poetry awareness and celebration. Since then it has become the largest literary celebration for the presence of poetry in our culture!

In honour of National Poetry Month this year,  I will be posting  exerpts from several of my poems throughout the month!  https://www.instagram.com I know 6 days have already passed so I’d like to redirect you to the “Poems” page of this blog where you can find 6 of my poems already published! https://spokenvisions.com/category/poems/

  • Our Buried Lives
  • Prodigy
  • Shepherdless
  • Love Couldn’t Love Her
  • Calm inside the Storm
  • Hour to Begin

Visit http://poets.ca/2016/02/08/national-poetry-month-2016/ or https://www.poets.org/national-poetry-month/poem-your-pocket-day to check out how you can participate in the projects they’ve launched to encourage the celebration of poetry.

If you somehow don’t make it to the websites, here are some of their suggestions for participating.

  • Start a “poems for pockets” giveaway in your school or workplace
  • Urge local businesses to offer discounts for those carrying poems
  • Post pocket-sized verses in public places
  • Memorize a poem
  • Start a street team to pass out poems in your community
  • Distribute bookmarks with your favorite lines of poetry
  • Add a poem to your email footer
  • Post lines from your favorite poem on your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Tumblr
  • Send a poem to a friend

Keep your eyes open you might just see my poems around the city!

NPM-2016-POSTER-S

 

We ALL fALL

When we gracelessly fall on our face in public, down a flight of stairs, or an invisible stump in the middle of a flat sidewalk, sometimes the first thing that comes to mind isn’t “Damn.. I think I broke something ” what most of us are wishing for in this moment, is that somebody cute walking by hasn’t caught a glimpse of our fall, right? Amidst the internal chaos happening within us, what makes us save face, get up and take our next step? Maybe we’ve fallen in cold snow, we have somewhere to be or we realize that the fall really wasn’t that bad. When we think about the risk we take every time we walk, is there  something inside of us that would hinder us from trusting walking as a means of transportation from day to day?

In a sense falling can be compared to failing. In terms of seeing the goal of walking as the ability to put one foot in front of the other. So when we fall we’ve clearly failed at coordinating our feet and accomplishing the goal of walking and moving forward.What I’m getting at with this is that many of us fear falling, it causes us embarrassment, anxiety and forces us to take precautions in advance to avoid the incident all together. But when we do fall, do we lay there helplessly forever, do we always deny help to get up and do we give up on walking? We know walking  literally takes us places  and even if walking is not a blessing everyone of us has, do we all stop moving forward?

Continue reading

My Rise to Poetry

My Story

In the beginning there was poetry

I always wanted to write poetry, to be a poet, to perform and be apart of the spoken word community. I aspired to do all of that and in actuality set out to do nothing. For the longest time I stunted my growth in this art form. The first poem I ever wrote was for an english class in high school, it was called “Her perspective”. I knew way before that assignment that I loved poetry and had a passion for writing. As a kid I used to write stories so the thought of performing stories was an aspiration I couldn’t refuse. But I did, I’ve always gotten great feedback on the poems I’ve performed but it has never been enough. I didn’t only want to hear that I was good, I wanted to feel it for myself. I always wanted to do more with my gift and I wanted my words to get people thinking, even if they didn’t like or understand what I was saying.

Continue reading