I wish I knew you… (maternal lineage)

…when you were praying for me.  an oracle or someone of the sort told me once: “one of the great-grandmothers…maternal lineage…she prayed for you long ago…blocked some things on your behalf.”  So, from my heart to yours, thank you. Thank you for looking ahead and thinking of me and mine. Thank you for having that divine connection…to know that you needed to do that for me.

…when you were your younger self. lesser children. maybe one.  were you happy then? did you dance? ….you were never my favorite.  you felt distant. I never really connected with you.  never really gravitated toward you.  never felt the urge to sit and talk with you….I don’t know why.  you were never open…free…willing to talk…willing to listen.  I just couldn’t.  I wish it were different.  because just following our family grapevine news/history, I’ve come to realize that your story was deep.  your experiences were …… different. the start of a snowball effect of strength and power and strength and independence and STRENGTH and STRENGTH and STRENGTH.  I wish I truly knew you.  understood why you were so stern…mean…  understood why I hardly ever saw you smile.  understand why I will never forget your laugh.  that laugh that I still hear through my mom.  I wish we connected….

Poppa. you were the best.  fearless. I adored you.  you were…. a true leader.  the people in the community looked up to you.  the day you died was the day I fell apart.  crumbled for days. because you. were. gone. I would never get to feel your soft hair again. I would never get to follow you around the yard again.  Stand next to you as you stood outside the kitchen. feel that amazing sense of safety (which I didn’t realize that’s what I was feeling at the time).  hear your voice thunder as you called for one of the boys to do something. give instructions and see them hauling tail to get to where you were and then see them hurry to complete the task at hand.  I thank you for being such greatness in my life. in my memories.  I wish I had more time with you.  Yet, I’m so grateful for the time we shared.

Mom…. There isn’t enough time. space. words. to express my forever gratitude to you. my forever gratitude for you. for your existence. your presence. your truth. your independence. your strength. your ambition. your determination. your strength. your persistence. your drive. your strength. your guidance. your direction. your strength. your instructions.  your intelligence. your strength. your voice. your song. your strength. your fervent prayers. your spiritual sight. your help.  your strength. your pain. your tears. your strength. your forgiveness. your strength. your love. YOUR STRENGTH. Oh, to be like you: peaceful.  POWERFUL. STRONG.  I’m glad God chose YOU for me. I can never imagine anyone else. I love you. Forever.

To my ancestors: great-grandmothers, grandma and poppa.  I wish…….. but even though I didn’t…..  I thank you for my mom.  I may not have known you all well, well-enough, or at all, but I believe that my mother is who she is because of you.  and so I thank you for her. For My MOTHER.

maternal lineagejamaica 2

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I wish I had…(paternal lineage)

known you in my time. in these days. I feel you would be proud of me.  I feel you would have sat me down and told me your own stories, your own struggles, how you overcame.  how you birthed all those beautiful children and then raised of few of theirs.  I feel you would have told me to just stop thinking so hard. so much. to be at peace.  I feel you would tell me about the “white side” of us. told me the truth of our bloodline because looking at your pictures, you seem more native-Indian.  told me how racism/prejudice outside is one thing, but racism/prejudice WITHIN the family was something different…deeper…more painful.  looking at your pictures I see such strength. your skin is bright-colored -red, as they call us. your face, freckled; a mark that can be seen even in the ones I birthed. your hair long. your body, strong. that smile…I see my grandma in you.  I wish you were here to see your grandson, my father, become a handsome man who absolutely sucked at being a husband, but does really well at being a dad and is an amazing grandpa.  You would probably say “he’s horrible, but he’s yours. pray him through. love him much.  he’ll get better.” and he did. you know this.

I wish I had more time with you.  you were horrible to my mom. yet you loved all her kids to pieces because they were planted by your son. I wish you didn’t push back against her pain. I wish you hadn’t contributed to her hurt  .I wish you hadn’t supported your son, my father, in his bulls**t the way you did.  and yet when Mother Time passed by and walked off with your memories…it seemed she only took the bad ones.  because when you remembered my mom, you remembered her as “the nice girl your boy married“.  you didn’t have a bad thing to say about her.  and that same Time, allowed me to sit with you once again. sing with you. use my thick thighs as drums as you sang along and it pleased you so well you smiled and said “likkle gal, yuh good pan di drums yuh nuh?”  and I grinned back with “only for you though granma!”  and me, though a 29 year old mother at that time, was once again a 5 year old in your presence.  and though Mother Time confiscated your bad memories, she left you with your knowledge of the words of the bible, the spiritual songs you learned growing up and throughout your years, your love of music and your love of family.  and even though as we sat together and sang, and at times you had no idea who I was, I knew you.  and I introduced myself to you many times throughout the day (as all your grandchildren had to) and we would start fresh.  I loved you.  I wish I had more time with you.

Dad, I’m glad I didn’t know the true you growing up.  I’m glad I saw you as King. I’m glad I saw you as Lead. I’m glad I was hoodwinked into thinking you were the best.  I never thought I would feel this.  but I am glad.  I’m glad I was well into my teenage years before I knew who you really were.  we have gone through some crap.  I always say, that of all your kids, I’ve dealt with you longer and deeper. I know you better. and we have gone through some crap.  you’ve crushed me, and I’ve hurt you.  but we always, ALWAYS, forgave and got back to being right.  I wish you did right by your own physical health. I wish you listened to our pleads for being better.  but I’m glad that after all of it, you’re still here. we me. with mom. with all of us.  I’m glad my children know and love you. I’m glad you still care.  I’m glad you feel you still have some control over us…I’m glad I’m able to respectfully remind you of the truth.

great-grandma> grandma> dad> me> mine…. this lineage of love and faults continue. and though I wish I had known the ones before, got to spend time with and learn about and from them, I’m glad I had and have what I have.  I’m glad I have truth.

family

where do you go?…

I lay in my bed with my bedroom door open, listening for the door to chime…telling me you’re home. safely. listening to that damn kitchen faucet dripping. dripping. it’s almost annoying…but not as annoying as me being up, waiting for your return as though you’re my child or my mate. and even though you are neither, our connection is just as important. you worry me. you screw with my nerves.  I wake up and realize that the light I left on for you is still on…telling me that you’re not home yet.  and my door is still open.

my

door

is

still

open

because where else will you return to?  after you’re done. doing.  being.  escaping.  you will still have a home. so I say a prayer …for your safety…and I go back to sleep.

do I even want to know?  I’ll leave it alone.  because you returned. safe. and the door chimed. and the faucet dripped. and my door was still open.

My door will always be open. for you.

open door

…cause I like pulling you into the quicksand with me…

…I told my friend, because she told me how she was avoiding twitter and the news as she didn’t want to know…. so I shared a tweet that summarized the full of the madness…and pulled her right back in…with me.

…he told her as she asked him why he pulled her back in…after so long of staying away… he missed her.  everything about her… from her smile, to her scent..from the way she counsels to the way she avoids him…he needed her in the quicksand with him.

…was her response…as he laid next to her, spent and high. high off her and whatever drug they took…of all the drugs they shared, she was his drug of choice. and she knew this.  this was the quicksand he just couldn’t seem to escape…he always seemed to dive-in. head first.  into the quicksand of her.

….. addiction….selfishness….insanity…..

quicksand

in your tower of…

whenever you think of someone locked away in a tower…you think Rapunzel.
you think of some helpless, brainwashed, child.

but have you ever considered the towers we lock ourselves in?
mental/emotional/spiritual towers.
these places in our hearts/minds/spirits where no one can reach us
where no one can disappoint us
no one can cause us  any pain.
we stay there feeling safe in our towers
looking down on others who took the risks to jump or climb or simply exit and find something different….
looking out at others living, loving, hurting and rebuilding.
we feel safe in the towers we build
but that safety has led to isolation
loneliness
longing
for something as simple and great as the human touch.
safe
safely withering away from the lack of love.

Rapunzel, Rapunzel… (feel free to replace that name with your own)
Let down your …hair…hurt…heartbreak…fear of…

rapunzel

 

thought for the day

Christoper Columbus discovered America and receives great acknowledgement for his “discovery”….

John Brown discovered Joe Smith’s house and gets arrested and charged for breaking and entering.

Mungo Park discovered the River Niger and receives great acknowledgement for his “discovery”….

yet there were people living, loving, producing there long before he got there….

The fact is, you can discover what belongs to someone else. However, the moment you take credit for it, it’s called THEFT.

chirstoper columbus

49 years and…

many children, twice as many grandchildren, and you still struggle to respect me.

ran three jobs for years to make sure that this family doesn’t fall in-need of anything, and you still struggle to respect me.

fell into various types of financial struggle because you refused to do right, and you still struggle to respect me.

bought homes, sold homes, bought, lost, started over, back on track.  Kids stayed fed, clothed, loved, cared for, well-educated and launched off on their own, while you sat back and took credit for it all….

I’ve prayed and fasted and rebuked and demanded righteousness.  I’ve fought spiritual battles on your behalf. Emotional and physical-health battles as well.  I’ve never given up….and still you struggle.

I’ve gone from shoveling snow to now sweeping up the leaves in the Florida heat because (you refuse to pay to get the tree chopped down) you can’t see well enough to do it, and yet you still find it hard to honor me…

years later, as pain riddles my body from all the work and heavy lifting and your sight fails you, it’s still me. Caring and guiding and cleaning up after you as needed. fulfilling all your demands still… is my breakfast ready?! what’s for lunch? why isn’t my dinner on the table yet?!?! … and I make it all happen.

At no point in our almost half century of marriage had I ever given you any reason to not honor and respect me for the woman I am, yet you refuse…

and so I’ve struggled to understand why…why you won’t talk right.  do right. act right. and then I see…. it’s because you struggle to respect yourself why you struggle to respect me.  There’s a continuous war raging within you. Regrets of things you’ve done wrong. to yourself. to me. to our marriage.  you are in constant fear that I will leave you for someone better. someone who will treat me better.  someone who will care for me in the great and wonderful ways that I deserve.  you know you don’t deserve me.  so you war within yourself. your struggle is with you. with yourself. not with me.

It’s not me. it’s definitely you.

But I’m still here.  I will continue to prepare your meals and guide you and pray with and for you and our children and their children.  I will continue to always make our house a home.  And when your inner-war turns outward… I will simply ignore you. leave you standing right in that place.  and when you exit that moment…your dinner will be ready.

sudden poetry

is what you grant me.
when I see your face…perfect. absolutely perfect in my eyes.
sudden poetry is what you gift me
whenever I hear you speak
so many words. such understanding. like you’ve been here before
sudden poetry is what you hand me
whenever you hold my face
“look at me”….”listen”…”I love you. so much”
sudden poetry is what you bless me with
each time you say “good morning”. “Amen”. “good night”.
I am selfish. I know. I embrace this because
this is the only part of my life where that word can truly be applied to me.
selfish.
I sit at work and I think about you. suddenly.
I wonder what you’re doing
I count the hours as they past because
after a while I get to see you
hear you
listen to your stories
supply your demands
I am selfish about you

Baby look at me.  Listen. I love you. So much

black mom