Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I've been written on with invisible paint. Ever since I entered the auditorium of Northeastern University almost a decade ago to encounter a rainbow of breakdancers, graffiti writers, DJs and MCs in the purest essence of hip-hop, my soul was soaked in colored rain. It doesn't come off. It moves with me, as does the darkness of that Mos Def song that the selector blended through the record needle that day. That day was confirmation that I'm only a canvas. I have never written a thing. I have only been written on. Any creation thought to be mine is just my unique display of the hues splashed about and around me.

 Passive, not active.

 From the impressions of the Spanish songs my sun-kissed Afro Honduran grandmother would sing while swaying her hips to the elongated conversations with Thaione Davis in Dr Wax record store about music and more, I am the composition of others. The sculpture appears as a passing moment. As soon as you blink, your eyes open to a transformed work of art that is not the same as that which you shut your eyes to for less than a millisecond. That sculpture is you and I. Enthralled with Reflection Eternal's "Memories" as I stir strange thoughts on my keyboard, I reflect on how Talib Kweli made me a rapper as I received him into my canvas. Common is my fingers, Neil Young is my back, and my father is my courage. My granddad must make up my head, because any faint flashes of intelligence that I may have are blurred copies of his universal of brilliance. My aunt tells me so. Mother is my eccentricity, her father is my aesthetic sensuality, and her brothers and sister are my creativity. What else will I become? That is left to what else I experience. She writes inspiration on my heart with a feathered quill, drawing me as close while my reality tells me I'm distant. Bu what she said in code on my body makes me believe that when I lie alone she is there. The festival of San Joaquin will see me bring devotion to the Virgin in hopes that she would delete the space between us. Her united state is a handgun pointing to the West, squeezed by some entity that writes on my loins, "seek her" in the blood its bullets steal from my flesh . That is what the universe has stamped upon me. With no agency to resist, I am at peace that the canvas, my life, is in the best of small hands, and trust that the world's inscriptions upon me will blow my wandering self to her bosom, persuaded by the wind as it whispers my name darkly.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Yesteryear Tomorrow

On the way to LA this past Saturday, I was nearly late for the train that would set my foot on its soil just before sunset. I nearly missed the train, and took rapid strides to arrive on time. Usually, time does not matter. These trains are always late. But, not this one. It was right on time, or even a minute early. As my ticket dropped from the machine a few seconds after the train doors opened, I rushed on the train, holding many of the highlights of Western philosophy in my hand. I caught a glimpse of it as I was boarding the vessel. It called me to it. The postmodern textures of the train cars didn't suit my contemplative mood, a mood that can take me from future to past. I walked from car to car to find solace, but could not. Then, as I kept moving to the last car of the train, I really saw it.

As I walked into the ancient car, with the seats adorned with light brown fabric from a Wonder Years show, and the floors gleaming as the sun bounced off its vintage metal strips, I passed into a porthole leading to that which had already been. I recognized it though when it was present, I didn't exist. It was like going from 2009 to 1965 instantly. I saw the world differently through its windows. Through these transparent glass holes, I can see conservative Christian dogmas and Jefferson Starship psychedelia at war in the California palm trees. They almost ruptured at the conflict. This car was the sore thumb in a modern world, being made years earlier. I could taste the patriarchy in the air, as foul as the very center of Archie Bunker's infamous chair. Yet, the flower scent of the winds of change mixed with the stench, assuring me that life requires the picking of forbidden fruits semi blind, making the taste of both the good and evil inevitable. I felt neither peace nor war here, just contemplation. As I exited the train and entered the modern era again, I wondered what had happened to me in this short hour when I was between Aristotle, Governor Regan, and these memory laden seats. Yet, I felt that I was related to everything in the universe in this olden train car.  Is the car God? Maybe not. Maybe God doesn't know where God is because there is nowhere to be known but the all, which is nothing. This reflection makes no sense because the essence and existence upon which I reflect is beyond the rational facades you mask your own ignorance with . Just the reality as I see it. Selah.

The word of the Lord from the God.