legitimize my ass

Raise the youth to never believe in dictated declarations of legitimacy. No dress code, no code of conduct, implicit nor explicit politeness are needed when a person is anchored in a deep sense of empathy and truth.

what could be a bigger downer than “failure”

I had started this blog with just my name, but it is not about me as a person, my writing here is meant to be me as a thinking, observing participant in our world. Collective failure was going to be my first entry, which seemed like a terribly depressing notion. I’d pondered, “will I simply be…

new visual landscapes

I love to wander, to arrive somewhere I don’t know and will never know again. I find deep relief in being amongst complete and total strangers. I don’t need any novelty or surprise site, I’m happy with the oddity of just that paint job, the houses and who might live in them, the rare shocks…

the only certainty is uncertainty

This will sound outlandish, but the 9/11 attacks occurred at the perfect time in my life. I did not profit nor truly suffer from that tragedy, but it did help to frame my world view. I had already come to understand true poverty by seeing children with distended bellies and victims of leprosy in the…

rejection

A person can have a rotting liver, an organ too full of poison to function any longer, a key mechanism failing, yet when the body is offered a new organ – a vital and healthy organ – the body can try to kill it off. The body’s immune system recognizes the new organ as foreign,…

“I’m taking the year off…to…um…write”

I am embarking on a strange new way of living, one that is structured only by my own self-discipline, rewarded in a currency of my own making, and with a high possibility of some type of failure. After ten years of teaching in a formal high school classroom, I am leaving behind that structure to live amongst…

from the desk of Marlon James

The author posted this note on FaceBook and it instantaneously illuminated for me a sensation I hadn’t been able to completely define. Marlon James Yesterday at 7:50pm · So I’m on a panel last night and somebody asks, how does one write when overcome with emotion, mostly grief I’m assuming. How does one get words…

[up from slobbery]

one of my favorite poets; we all need more poetry [up from slobbery] BY HARRYETTE MULLEN up from slobbery hip hyperbole the soles of black feet beat down back streets a Yankee porkchop for your knife and fork your fill of freedom in Philmeyork never trouble rupture urban space fluctuates gentrify the infrastructure feel up…

When I Think of Tamir Rice While Driving

in the backseat of my car are my own sons, still not yet Tamir’s age, already having heard me warn them against playing with toy pistols, though my rhetoric is always about what I don’t like, not what I fear, because sometimes I think of  Tamir Rice & shed tears, Source: When I Think of…

contained

In the 80s, and perhaps for decades before, pantyhose were sold at the local Woolsworth packed in a plastic egg. Just like those brightly colored plastic easter eggs that parents buy and fill with candy because actual dyed hard-boiled eggs that have been sitting in the yard for a few hours are gross to eat….

for non-Black folks

A powerful new call for the empowerment and respect of Black people has been issued. It has transcended grassroots activism, permeated discussion of culture and power, made demands on those in political positions, and inspired a creative response from artists. For non-Black folks it can feel alienating, aggressive, “disrespectful”, divisive… But I have never understood…

the punK aesthetic

Originally posted on collective failure:
A while back, this guy I went to high school with began dating an (ex)friend of mine. Eventually he felt comfortable enough to assess my current self to my teenage self. You see in high school I gave a total of zero shits about social norms. I never had a…