a blackgirl's permutating manifesto on windowsill marigolds & freestyle guerilla acts

Monday, May 05, 2003  

My, has it been a minute. Gentrification pushed me into a new neighborhood where I have not received cable or internet access, yet. Bear with, peeps. I'll be connected soon. Writing soon. 50 Cent is still packed in a box somewhere in my living room. And indeed I'm suffering.

posted by coloredhoney | 1:14 PM

Monday, April 07, 2003  

Indeed, sometimes it snows in April. Do you remember that Prince song from the Under the Cherry Moon soundtrack? Outside my window snow clings to tree branches, traps cars in their parking spaces, and hinders pedestrians who, by the way, just received allergy shots and medication, preparing themselves for the pollen of springtime. However, it is Kris Kringle and his gang of reindeer flying over these Brooklyn rooftops, early this year, minus presents and fa-la-la-la-la. Snow in April should mean minor flurries not urban icebergs blocking traffic and the growth of tree buds. But in these times I'm not surprised that the gods are angry.

Clearly the education system in America is flourishing more than any other institution. I can't see why the pentagon staff would model its briefings after kindergarten show and tell if it wasn't.

posted by coloredhoney | 2:01 PM

Sunday, March 30, 2003  

I'm sure that you are aware that parenting in New York consists of using guerilla tactics such as teaching your child the subway stop and subsequent route to small Brooklyn apartment by the time he's 18 months. By 18 months your child should also understand how to perform small tasks like clearing his plate and putting it in the sink. He can carry the light bags when it's time to grocery shop. He can begin learning how to cook by identifying basic spices and distinguishing between various types of leafy greens. He should have, by two and a half, reached an understanding of working a toddler hustle. The other day my not yet three child asked me for some money. I gave him a couple of quarters. He looked at me with the most serious of facial expressions and said,"Dollars mommy. I want dollars." Like Rakim, Amir is always in a New York state of mind.

posted by coloredhoney | 9:55 AM

Thursday, March 27, 2003  

Well, you would think in these bloody uncivil times I would listen to wholesome uplifting music, like Sweet Honey in the Rock, Cassandra Wilson, India Arie, or Erykah Badu whose cd's constantly rotate on my stereo. Nah, peeps. It is official:50 Cent reigns on my speakers, peaceful darlings. Not even Nas whose hiphop switches from exalting Nubian Queens and saving the original essence of hiphop to banging big booty ho's while getting high off haze in the Queensbridge center, wins the majority of my favor these days. I'm straight supporting the gully tip every morning after I drop my son off. 50 is the psychotic, yet clever lyricist of G-Unit whose violence and pathos matches Eminem's white boy serial killer ways. And they fit perfectly together lounging in exploited riches on top of Dre beats. I never got into Em. He's got lyrics, grinds personal pathology into catchy diddies, but that voice! That mean whiny truck engine he rhymes with has no bass. That irritates me. He just sounds crazy and pissed off. Well, on a bad day I can sound like that too. No props, E. However 50's got that cool lazy slur and he's not trying to be understood as anything but a bad guy who just happens to rhyme toting a weapons' arsenal the size of Fargo. He's been shot 9 times, has lived to tell the story 9 million ways, and makes interesting configurations of spilled brains, skullies, and a lot of bullets. Dre's beats as usual move slow through the dragon's belly rumbling smooth at the bottom of the trenches. 50 rhymes from the bottom flowing mostly destructive gratuitous violence through the country's streets and guess what, there's a whole bunch of us who like it. And what is that about? I can condemn Bush to burn against walls of fire, but then I'm bobbing my head to 50 Cent like what, Brooklyn, yo, word is bond-this shit is hot. I am a mother to a young Black boy in america. Have I lost my mind? I remember, at the end of the day, 50 is entertainment. He feeds the curiosity of the goody goodies who, like me, ban their kids from pulling the trigger on a water gun. OOh-what's it like not to give a fuck about karma and sing excitedly this gospel chorus:
I love to pump crack, love to stay strapped, love to squeeze gats--but you don't hear me though.
I love to hit the block, love my two glocks, love to bust shots--but you don't hear me though
Oh, I hear you, Mr. Cent and I confine my listening to the privacy of your cd. I will not be attending your concert and if I see you in the street, I will run. Fast. Far away from you. Why? Because as stated in the middle of this piece, you''re kinda nutty. But dude, love your romantic duet with Nate Dogg, 21 questions. I'm not getting attached to you, though, the way I did Biggie cause it seems like your main goal after accumulating big cash and bigger guns, is to become eulogized. In the meantime...Go's your birthday.....

posted by coloredhoney | 10:04 AM

Wednesday, March 26, 2003  

I try not to be numb because then you can't act, you won't think forward. But I am facing difficulty in not capitulating to the murky waters of grief and sorrow. My brain has unraveled and fallen on my shoulders. Keep ya head up, Tupac would say. But I can't. I have no eloquence, no elegies, no parables, no old Negro spirituals to lift over to Basra or Bagdad. I have no words for the mothers who weep far past their own deaths for their children instructed to kill other mothers' children and anyone else standing in the way of oil fields. I thought I had been inoculated against american absurdity a long time ago. I thought I possessed enough pessimism to ward off the arresting shock of raw imperialism. However, this fictitious war, in the words of Michael Moore, has taken my breath away. Cause that's the thing; this war is not fiction. Brought to us on the stage of technology via satellite and digital cameras the bombs drop like DMX and Jet Li are on the set deflecting them with fancy Kung Fu kicks. Nothing deflects, instead the air swiftly guides, the bombs, missiles, F-16 fighter jets delivering Fed-Ex death to the marketplaces, the homes, the hospitals, the water systems, the bloodlines. The rubble and dust that were once a city called Badgad float on hunger, dysentary, dead cells and blood. That the Iraquis would defend themselves makes Blair and Bush instruct their spokespeople/puppets/mimes/talking heads to respond to accusations of inhumane tactics with indignation. "Why didn't you hear me make the point earlier in my speech that this is the 15th anniversary of Saddam using chemical weapons to kill thousands of his people...there is a pattern of cruel behavior and I don't know what to call them, these people-paramilitary is too positive- these thugs- I call them- set up military targets within meters of you see how cruel they are, how inhumane they are...We have our army putting out the oil fires as we speak...As we said we want to preserve the oil fields for the Iraqi people" Who are these people, these bull headed thugs who refuse to do what's best and hand over their country to Daddy? And remember our military is doing everything it can to direct missiles towards targets with clarity. There have been mistakes but we are perfecting the trajectory of the missiles, the new and improved Tomahawk ones. "We're not sure if it was an Iraqui or Coalition missile" that bombed the highly populated Shaab district of Bagdad while it slept and the pentagon staff ate lunch. But rest assured we're going to figure it out because our tanks, machine guns, and nerve gas murder only to liberate the Iraqui people."

Birds chirp outside my window right now, holding a delightfully animated conversation. I wonder for how long?

posted by coloredhoney | 12:40 PM

Monday, March 24, 2003  

I've been rereading a lot of june jordan lately. i only hope to one day write with her power, her artistry. she gives it to you straignt, no chaser allowed. june 14, 2003 marks the first year anniversary of her death. read Some Of Us Did Not Die, honor her communal and spiritual intent, get to know her words, her strength and discover your own.

She Knows What Time It Is

the world's seas and rivers parted
when news of june jordan's death
spread through earth's underground
splitting solid surfaces
the news stopped the planet's heart
halted the flow of air
all matter stilled

her humble smile disguised
no conviction
no fighting word
spared no necessary critique
to the death she checked
fake wars racist projects
brutal regimes confines of gender
wings plumed from her
back in blue green gold
orange and red
brilliant feathers of fire
she embroidered rhythm
shook loose metaphor into
spiral dances
if he had known, Jay-Z would have said
she was sick with words. pleeze.
she remembered
paul laurence dunbar spoke in the genius
tongue of the Black poor a tradition that
travelled through
the talkling drum in her poems
she rejected
jailed english
chose language that restored
power to the people!
wrote Poetry for the People
cause she understood
poetry be the people
she measured the fatal cost of silence
against the high value of voice
raged woman black against
our blithe murder
imposed mule order

like louis messiah wrote of toni cade
june jordan made
"revolution irresistible"

posted by coloredhoney | 9:48 PM

Saturday, March 22, 2003  

I came home to two children tearing my house up. One girl who is five and a boy who is almost three have usurped rule from mine and their Dad/Uncle's hands. They hold court by fighting and hugging in alternate sequences. Constant thumping, yelling, laughing, and crying because one pushed, hit, sat on, stole candy from the other livens the house and puts the adults in a good mood. I say to myself this is kind of fun. My son is occupied and I can write without him clamoring for my attention by climbing up the side of the computer. Maybe I should have another one. They compete by trying to out giggle each other, by finding the best places in these tiny living rooms to hide. They run, scamper, bang into doors, slide across floors without one thought to their mortality. I laid down the law when I walked in the door: only mild bruises allowed; it was a beautiful day, I'm not spending the night in the emergency room. They call out their names when one is more than three feet away from the other. Neither wants to be abandoned from the glorious activity of play. They are in back of me scaling the roof of Amir's Flintstone like automobile appealing to me for help. "Help me! We're falling apart!" Panting, they nosedive into the many piles of laundy that pad my floor. I hear the ominous sound of legos crashing into other toys and it is sweet. Their energy is as frenetic as OutKast's "Bombs Over Bagdad", crazy, buzzing with electricity, charged with orange and white bolts of focused heat. They lap each other up. They squeeze each other in joyful suffocating embraces. Each time the cousins meet it is a cause to blow trumpets and sing. That is how wide their love stretches for each other.

In Bagdad loved ones try to reconnect whole children out of burned limbs scattered throughout the city "It has been a strategic war. It has gone according to plan." What kind of fear awaits the knowledge of a bomb coming to level your birthright. Did the soldiers carry OutKast's cd as they trooped through the desert towards the cities whose gates they're instructed to storm with machine guns? The bodies of children lie bloodied in a Basra hospital Relatives wait for officials to bring news of the missing heads. Doesn't Bush own children of color, the ones his father referred to in 1988 as "the little brown ones?" Doesn't his stomach cramp when he slaughters children like sheep?

The last two days have seen hanging buttered suns and warm air thaw tight frowns frozen from the winter that just left. People were naked in the streets, living in the moment hoping there will be no third bombing, no completion to the trilogy. People inconspicuously watch the sky for missiles. New Yorkers try to keep their edge from breaking their cool. No one wants their jitters leaping from their chests. The Anti-War Affect. People marched through Manhattan protesting the oil killings. Rumsfeld on Friday seemed at a loss to explain the egregious nature of Iraquis to the U.S. Would they really torch the oil fields burning up the best resource the country has? "It would be a shame to lose those fields. We certainly don't want them to burn." He nearly wept at the prospect. "Tear down the Regime!" meaning Bush not Saddam, read signs of the marchers. He sends the babies to kill mothers. His military trains them to traumatize the busdrivers, teachers, tailors, cooks, doctors, merchants, lazy asses, lovers, brother, grandmothers, children, the growth of flowers, the thinkers, the writers, the gatekeepers of their indigenous thought. He trains his army to colonize eating and shitting habits. What kind of bloodthirsty soil was I born on? Beneath the earth dead bones drum to welcome the bounty of dropped bombs.

posted by coloredhoney | 5:48 PM