“What a friend we have in Jesus” (& Nikki): A musing response to Nikki Giovanni’s “A Good Cry”

I turned myself into myself and wasjesusmen intone my loving nameAll praises All praisesI am the one who would save —Nikki Giovanni, “Ego Tripping (There May Be a Reason Why)”  Jesus wept. (John 11:35) I find Jesus and Nikki to be quite similar, maybe even one and the same. Admittedly, however, I don’t know either that well. But I think I know enuf about them to make such … Continue reading “What a friend we have in Jesus” (& Nikki): A musing response to Nikki Giovanni’s “A Good Cry”

Furious Flower + Nikki Giovanni: from the Black Arts Movement to Planet Mars

In the beginning was the Word. But I promise you, I have no words to express my week long adventure at Furious Flower’s The Living Truth: The Life and Work of Nikki Giovanni, a professional development seminar for college professors & high school teachers. Words just won’t do; they are inadequate. But I will try my best. For six days, I–along w/circa 50 other professors, … Continue reading Furious Flower + Nikki Giovanni: from the Black Arts Movement to Planet Mars

A Sonnet for Black Mothers & Their Girls Who Understood “Is-ness” before It Was a Theory, w/Kind Regards to Thich Nhat Hanh

I remember sitting at Momma’s feet— my shoulders held captives between her knees, two pillows supporting my back & seat, while I cupped a jar of Blue Magic grease that seemed to put magic in Momma’s hands. She tackled my head like her weekend chores: scratching out dandruff like scrubbing stained pans, & greasing dry scalp like mopping stained floors, & parting my hair like … Continue reading A Sonnet for Black Mothers & Their Girls Who Understood “Is-ness” before It Was a Theory, w/Kind Regards to Thich Nhat Hanh

Since Reading Alice Walker’s “The Cushion in the Road”

I’ve been reading Alice Walker’s latest collection of essays, The Cushion in the Road: Meditation and Wandering as the Whole World Awakens to Being in Harm’s Way 2013, and find myself contemplating her musings well after I have put down the text.  Keeping my nose out of Walker’s text proves challenging, and I am already a bit saddened that I am coming to its end. Nevertheless, while tiresomely driving to Miami … Continue reading Since Reading Alice Walker’s “The Cushion in the Road”

Composing for Martin Luther King

This semester I’ve integrated visual arts, poetry, and technology in my composition classroom by way of Creative Composition assignments that require writing students to explicate their understanding of Martin Luther King’s rhetoric and philosophy.  Students are given creative allowance, and therefore, can choose their medium.  Below are some examples of my students’ creative compositions, and here is my own, (A Poem for MLK), which I wrote … Continue reading Composing for Martin Luther King

Winners of the College Language Association’s Margaret Walker Poetry Prize, 2012

I wrote the following peace in 2007 while my high school students watched a Civil Rights film.  It is a celebration of a woman whose aura woos me. a poem for YK (because there’s something about her aura) I wrote “If Jesus Were A Smoker, He’d Be My Daddy” after a conversation I was having with a former partner wherein I described to her my father’s smoking … Continue reading Winners of the College Language Association’s Margaret Walker Poetry Prize, 2012