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Showing posts from August, 2018

Moment to the Sun

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What I am is the sun.We are one in the same. One. 
I breathe heavy exhales. 
Love to my left. My love to my right. 

1:06PM

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I killed her. Slow and deliberate death. No gun. No knife. No poison. She’s dead. The voice of fear that tried to destroy any chances of me living out my ancestors’ wildest dreams. Killed her with creativity. Killed her by pushing through, even when she was in my mirror screaming, “You are never going to get it right! How dare you think you, alone, are enough?!” I silenced her with yoga poses and mindfulness. Then, I sliced her throat with my pen. I read my way out. Wrote my way up. Worked my way here. I am healed. I spent this summer celebrating the resurrection of my highest self and I had the audacity to tell my therapist, “I am not depressed, anymore.” From the depths of her ebony, she said, “You found the cure: listening to all the voices and knowing the difference between which ones are guiding/protecting you and which ones are projections of the wounded version of you.” I know who I am. Soft smile, cozy sweats. Content in my bliss. If I claim to be light, that’s what you should…

1:01AM

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We are all looking at ourselves, without actually looking. 
Selfies show our physical appearance, we pour more energy into lowly facades, than our souls. 
Another mind-controlled generation. 
But what do I know?  I’m just a teacher.



The Tunnel Vision of the Introverted Creative

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A quality possessed by all introverted creatives is tunnel vision. 
Today, I walked by a woman I truly admire and did not speak. Not once but three times. Before you turn your nostrils into a flare, hear me out. 
I was in my head. 
I could write a long drawn out piece, detailing each separate encounter but then you would waste your time reading a story that would simply conclude with, I was in my head. 
What I often forget:  When I am in my head, I don’t see anything outside of it. This could mean people, places, or things. So many people have told me that I saw them and did not speak to them; my answer is always, “Really? I did not see you!” No lie. 
The more I read these books on children who are suffering from trauma, the more I understand how my own brain has been impacted by the same experience these books talk about ... so I won’t sit here and get down on myself about being rude today or any other day, because I know it was not intentional. 
And I won’t blame my mental “illness,” eithe…

Integrity

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When you find yourself turning down television shows because the network wants to exploit the lives of your students, you can truly smile, knowing you are doing the right work for the right reasons. Respectfully, I declined an offer that would’ve put me in a position that questioned my integrity. That offer taught me one thing: people see our struggle as a come up. I’m not with it. There’s always a better way, a greater opportunity is on the way. I am ready.



10:03PM

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Listen to the sound of the rain on a Tuesday night. It talks to itself, as if no one else is around. It makes you remember everything it brings up. Drops of memories. 
Overtime, you’ll forget how much you appreciate her. The way she smiles will be the gesture that brings you back. You’ll never leave her without a new reason to love you. You, Black man, bring her joy. 
Victorious and worthy. Two words that describe your heart. Strong enough to save a life. 
End the battle between yourself and your world the moment you denounce this as your world. It is not your world, it is your universe. You are infinite. Do not limit yourself. 



8 Norms for Teaching via IG Stories

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We have moments of power, where we say things with confidence ... but then we lose that confidence and forget what we said and even who we are. The beauty is that people hear us and come to us to remind us of our words just when we need them the most. 
Thank you to my mentee for posting these old words of mine.
Love always🌹🌹

A Sunday Morning

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10:42AM
Supposed to be But what is supposed to be
To be 
We all  Already are  Everything we  Were born 
To be

You are what you see  I see the light  I gaze and fall into the fire  I become  What I am supposed 
To be
I called my auntie  We talked and she talked some more And I listened  And we laughed  And I know she needed to hear my voice and I am so delicate when it comes to her religion  She’s old school  Bonafide  Westernized  Christian  Lost in the ways of the word Powerful on her own accord but gives glory to one outside of herself not realizing she is her Highest Self But she taught me 
To be
Strong in meditation Get up from my bed at 4:30am and say to myself  Breakthrough for breakfast  Read for a while and take a walk  And drink some water and  Listen to the quiet on the city on a Sunday morning Before everyone is up  Across the street from the methadone clinic In walking distance from the city jail  Free them all from themselves  Because no man can hold us down We are one  But some are blind  And some are afraid  No…

Via IG 8.16.18: Pain is One of the Hardest Addictions to Break

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Even your favs feel wack about their craft at times. Lately I’ve been feeling wack af. But idc. Imma keep creating and writing until I am satisfied. I know it’s because I’m in a new place in the grieving process: acceptance. With acceptance comes a peace and contentment I am not used to at all. 
My answer to everything lately has been: it’s all love, all is well. And I actually believe it! 
I looked at this picture of my parents this morning. I didn’t have a mom and dad, I was raised by two southern bred sisters, who made their way from NC to NYC. My gran and my great aunt, whom I call “ma” and “otha’ mama” ...one taught me how to talk sh’t and “neva’ let nobody get ova’” on me and the other taught me how to read, write, and pray. Family Matters and the Cosby Show had me growing up thinking we were dysfunctional. I wanted more than what I was given and was not understanding of the fact that I had everything I needed and we were good the way we were. 
Mental health needed to be addressed,…

Live: K. Fidel Releases Hummingbirds FROM the Trenches

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Baltimore 
7:44PM The rain that poured and roared about an hour ago over Charm City cleared up just in time for Kon to release, Hummingbirds in the Trenches ... but he is not simply releasing his book, he is opening the gates that have kept us hummingbirds in the trenches. Tonight, we are free.
7:51PM Typewriter flow. Left my journal home I feel naked. All good... this forces me to blog in the moment. Level up. 
The ambiance in Arena Players needs much work... I want to invest in this space, it’s too close to home for us to not take care of it. 
I don’t think we have ignored it, I think we don’t even realize what has become of it because we steady vibing out in it. When the grooves feel good, you don’t stop to notice it, you allow yourself to remain present and enjoy. 
7:55PM Desiis an amazing story teller. I recorded his set, plan to use it in the classroom, help the kids learn to tell oral narratives. Such an art. One of the many talents we, as a people, naturally covet. 
8:13PM Eddie Vanz is …

Via IG 8.12.18

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Last night, I went to the thrift store and dinner with my partner. We did not riot, we did not go to the police station to demand justice. We rode through East Baltimore and talked. He was visibly distraught. All he wanted to do was drive as far from the city as possible so we could get some fresh air. So we rode beyond the county line, listening to Jill Scott, holding hands, in silence... I regretted posting that video immediately after I put it up (I took it down...). I know these viral clips are part of the marketing scheme that perpetuates the brutalization of Black bodies. I honestly would have preferred for whoever was taping it to have tried to stop it instead of recording it. But what else are we prepared to do when we see our selves on the ground getting aired out? We are not necessarily desensitized, it’s more like being in a nightmare that you can’t wake up from. You can feel everything but you can’t stop it from hurting. Like being in a cage and someone is pressing buttons…

Adding Texts: The Good Braider

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Baltimore changed the Humanities curriculum back in June. I’ve been spending time reading the required texts and figuring out where to insert supplemental texts.
One of the most frequently asked questions I get is, “Does your principal allow you to go rogue with your scripted curriculum? How do you have time add to it?!” The answer is through literature. I base everything I do off of the required texts. I add more and align my lessons with the modifications my students with IEPs need and formative assessments that I collect on a daily basis. 
Basically, I prove that what I am doing is going to have a direct impact on the students and I show evidence of their learning. “The Good Braider” is not in my curriculum but we will be reading other narrative poetry novels, so this is a natural fit. The voice of the main character rings from the trenches of Sudan. It is relevant and relatable, being that sometimes, it really does feel we are at war here in Baltimore.




Via IG 8.4.18: Master Teacher Flow

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Nothing changes your perspective like death, especially the death of a loved one, for me this loved one was one of my students. Instead of being desensitized, I forced myself to feel my way through. I even heard his spirit say, “You can’t numb this...” It was an ugly period of private grieving, as I refused to hoe my pain on social media. I’m so tired of us mourning more than we celebrate our Black boys. Black boys that are fathers. Black boys that never met their fathers. Black boys who don’t rap or play ball. Black boys who got kicked out of class in 3rd grade instead of held and nurtured and understood. I can’t accept this loss. I can and will combat it. I can honestly say, I am ready to get back into the classroom now... for a minute there, I was about to book a one-way flight to any place that’s not here and never look back. But there was no way I could do that. I ain’t no runner, I am a teacher.A healer. A lover. And a disciplined warrior.So, while Baltimore leads the way in bei…