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

remembering daddy, remembering me: a 5-paragraph writing assignment for intermediate composition

Daddy told me I was a revolutionary w/no cause. I don’t know what I was doing at that very moment he made that comment. Maybe I was reciting a poem I wrote about crackers makin it on black folks’ bended backs. Or maybe I was organizing a showcase for Black History Month. I probably was just sittin at the dining room table wearing a dashiki–most likely … Continue reading remembering daddy, remembering me: a 5-paragraph writing assignment for intermediate composition

#TBT “no es facil”: tryin to capture President Barack Obama

I spent two years trying to paint President Barack Obama. My first attempt was a lightweight disaster: However, my Instagram responders were supportive: So, I tried again: But I stopped. I was afraid to continue painting–afraid that if I kept going, I would lose him. ‘Cause this looks like Barack Obama, right? I left that painting unfinished, & I placed it–as well as the one … Continue reading #TBT “no es facil”: tryin to capture President Barack Obama

“Up, you mighty race!”: from the African American Museum Inauguration to the Black Panther’s 50th Anniversary

Martin Luther King held fast to dreams, while Huey P. Newton gave all power to the people, & Jesse Jackson insisted we keep hope alive. Thru each of them, & many others, Barack Obama assured us we can— Be young, gifted, & black. Be unbought & unbossed. Be revolutionary. Be-long. In light of the #icantbreathe #amInext #blacklivesmatter movement, the inauguration of the Smithsonian’s National Museum … Continue reading “Up, you mighty race!”: from the African American Museum Inauguration to the Black Panther’s 50th Anniversary

FAMU just tried it w/its Blue Lives Matter talk

Florida A&M University (who, by the way, Wendy Williams, graduated Wimbledon’s first Black woman’s single crown winner, Althea Gibson; acclaimed cancer surgeon Dr. LaSalle Leffall; congresswoman Carrie Meek; singer/actress Anika Noni Rose; & screenwriter/director Dee Rees to name a few) is holding a university-wide conversation this afternoon that its organizers have titled: “Healing Voices: Black and Blue Lives Matter | A Conversation.” What. thee. hell? … Continue reading FAMU just tried it w/its Blue Lives Matter talk

Madea Comes to FAMU

Recently, I sat on a discussion panel in Florida A&M University’s Writing Resource Center where three other colleagues of mine & I were invited to discuss our literary contributions to the English department’s required Freshman Communicative Skills II reader, Writing from the Hill. The custom text, which includes an anthology of poems, short stories, creative non-fiction, visuals, & a play, reflects a literary genius that … Continue reading Madea Comes to FAMU

Teens Carry Smartphones, But Are They Getting Smarter? A Response to My Fresh(wo)man Student

My fresh(wo)man composition students were charged with blogging reader responses to their chapter readings in Robert Atwan’s America Now text re: social media. In his first chapter, “Social Media: What Do We Gain? What Do We Lose?” authors Andrew Santella (“This Is Not About You,” 2013); Yzzy Gonzalez (“Technology Taking Over?” 2013); and Clive Thompson (“The Parent Trap: How Teens Lost the Ability to Socialize,” … Continue reading Teens Carry Smartphones, But Are They Getting Smarter? A Response to My Fresh(wo)man Student

From Cairo to Compton: a self reflection

I traveled to Cairo, Egypt this summer.  But by no means am I a “deep” siSTAR belonging to an Afrikan consciousness group whose members have changed their names to something that reflects their Kemet energy.  As a matter of fact, besides the commercialized ankh—which I’ve tattooed thrice on my body; the pyramids—which I throw up to express my sorority affiliation; and Queen Nefertiti—whose 18k gold … Continue reading From Cairo to Compton: a self reflection

a concise response to Morrison’s God Help the Child

My response to Morrison’s most recent novel, God Help the Child, will be as brief as the 178 pages that comprise it; I am aiming for 178 words. & so it is: Undoubtedly, brevity is (one of) Morrison’s genius.  From exploring the Middle Passage to the supernatural, racism, feminism, & Christianity to nature, memory, & touch, Morrison’s fiction is as thorough as Homer’s epics & … Continue reading a concise response to Morrison’s God Help the Child

FAMU’s DowJones High School Summer Camp 2014

This summer I worked again with Florida A&M University’s DowJones Summer Camp for high school students.  This grant-funded initiative aims to encourage 11th and 12th graders to pursue a bachelor’s degree in journalism/communications.  The grant requires students to use multimedia to deliver the news.  Therefore, in addition to teaching students the fundamentals of news writing and reporting, students learn how to use social media to … Continue reading FAMU’s DowJones High School Summer Camp 2014