In the cool steel of the night it wakes me up, thoughts unwinding like dancing visions before me,i see it stretched out like a canvas, a show piece of visions, future, potential. My hands itch to do the work. Words which i once said to challenge fear, challenge me. They are lodged in the back of my throat, some underneath my tongue, and my eyes are dark with longing. I have seen this vision many times before, a girl with a dream, with hope that fluttered deep in the bosom of a heart that beat like an african drum. Sweat clings to my skin, its liquid laminating my pert features, as i reach for my pen, i feel it now, the thud, the claw, the whispers of fear. Drawing close attempting to suck me in. Do i leave my dream to be unfulfilled, when my fingers twitch and ache, when new words are desperate to be born from their prison, do i sing it a lullabye and allow it to be lulled to sleep by envious fears, and spirit dancers with spears, no i must fight, for in the wake of this dream, something omnipotent is here.
I was thinking about life and all the people we’ve lost through Covid through all the other challenges and obstacles life puts out there, life can be so unpredictable. Yet we are still here, and with the life we have we must fight for the visions we started with. Growing up I was always very different to others around me, I had a unique perspective. At many times in my life I was judged, treated cruelly for being intelligent there were some who believed that as a young black woman who wasn’t abundant with coin, I should know my place. At one point in my life I was bullied so badly and treated so abhorrently, I just went mute I stopped speaking. The trauma was too much for me, I remember it and I feel it at times even when things appear to be going so smoothly. I remembered how the jealous tongues of others in the community I grew up in was used to cripple me, I remember being treated without mercy for having a disability, when I first started out in business in my community I was laughed at, became the joke of the community, was called the N word. These same people would stand out in the streets parroting community , community. I was a young black girl, without my father present, with jealous elders in the neighborhood tearing me down. It was fine when I was just seen as this ghetto Stereotype who wouldn’t accomplish much but when people started to see and people started to hear I wasn’t invisible anymore. I was called every name under the sun, a Nigga,a slut,a whore, for years, there were kids who I used to walk past like normal suddenly treating me like I was the worst person in the world because of the things their parents were saying behind closed doors. And I heard many of those things. I was nicknamed the ugly one in the family, because I was a dark skinned woman, at one point there was some sort of village movement in my neighborhood to bully me into submitting and giving the people who had destroyed my confidence and many years of my life, introductions to connections. I never received justice for it. I write this now because I remember who I was once upon a time, before I began to question so many things about people so many things about self. I remembered how I used to smile and laugh, and dance just for no reason, and I miss that girl. For those people who are different, who somehow we always stand out no matter how much we try and blend in, no matter how old we get we always have to put the armour on because we have to prepare for the idiots who are scared of our voice. I just want to tell you that’s it’s alright. It’s alright to be different, you have to forgive yourself for not being like everybody else, no one has the right to punish you for it. I lived for many years of my life in Beckton and never got justice for the bullying, the harassment, most of it I couldn’t even prove. When In a fit of rage I confronted one of the bullies who was trying to destroy my name, clever little fox he managed to calmly convince others that it was my own challenges, and no I hadn’t experienced a consistent tornado of abuse from him for many years. Words like Nigga that destroy your soul, comments that have you weeping in private. Yet my point is in this time where people are loosing their lives and being challenged by things we cannot see, please please hold unto those blessed happy moments and celebrate the self that you are. And if you are,a little different, a little unique, my sister always says to me that despite all the pain my voice will be the loudest. Your triumph will be your uniqueness. If your young and your black please never let anyone crucify you with the N word, those of us who are not ignorant know the origins of that word. It was used to destroy people’s spirits for being different, and now people joke with it for comic relief claiming wordplay,even with those outside of their race. No for many years that word was used to crucify and destroy, it’s used to make sure you feel less than. We are not less than. And wether your black white green or translucent let’s give time and space to what’s different, god added variety on Earth for a reason…I hear it’s the spice of life.
We all have them, faces that thrive upon seeing us fail. People who have polluted their lives and their own options with their own self contempt, that there is no option for them,in their minds, simply to grit their teeth and his at what were becoming. I’ll say it once and I’ll say it twice, it is not your job to fix all the broken souls in the world. People who mentally crucify themselves with their own poor choices and judgement, then unleash hell unto you. You are nobodys punching bag. Your journey is different , your soul needs healing. In life as writers and facilitators of our own script,as we tap into a greater more infinite self,there will be trials. There will be obstacles. Those obstacles leave you with your own sense of trauma, each time, you need to call collect to the spirit, and the guardian for a top up just to survive the frey. Yet we are warriors still, triumphant in our stance,magnificent in our journey, never let anyone still your armour.That armour is your self esteem, the ability to infuse mind with ideas that leap out at us, and provide the source for our pens. Use your mind, it is part of your shield and the pulse of your armour. As a creative it is your gem.
It never stops does it. I was thinking about the anxiety we experience when it comes to our work, the fear of not being good enough, worthy enough, or sharp enough to execute. Everybody goes through it.It is a ear of two selves. The hardest thing to do is believe in something you cannot see yet, whilst the rest of the world, thrash at you with their commentary, and looks of disappointment. You must have tunnel vision at all times, this is not their vision, it’s yours. This is not their passion it’s yours, it’s your promise to yourself. Have a schedule and execute daily, believe in your potential, even if your talking to yourself on the street challenging your mind, you must be able to talk yourself into success. You must be able to facilitate new habits that will get you to where you need to get to. There is a difference between wishing upon a star, a dream and having a method.
It’s with faith we do things, we take risks that there is no guarantee will pay off. No guarantee you will land on solid ground once you leap into the air blind, yet thrust yourself you must. Trust yourself you must. It is madness when we leap blind not to trust the self. I was thinking today about all the time i had to take a risk on myself, seeing the dream that others could not see, touching it, feeling it, enveloping myself in it. There were days when I felt like backing down, when the put downs of others kept me alienated from my highest self, wishing that I could be, or think like everybody else. It lasted but aminute, and I returned to seeing what I saw with my vision untainted. Channeling the wisdom and the faith that had planted itself deep within, like a stubborn seed, angry to be removed. My dreams gave me a voice, they fueled my hunger, they held my hand as I leapt ungracefully a stumbling gazelle in the mist of my own imagination. I tell you now, as I said to myself in journals, letters, on dictaphones, at least try and fail, then learn and grow. At least develop, at least challenge yourself and at least believe in your potential.
We tremble at the mercy of a pen, pinched words lost sentences in translation. A brain that is mercilessly stoic at times, we find ourselves engulfed in ideas and questions that keep us circulating hungrily for answers. Where do I see this work going? What is its progression? Who would it appeal to? I have half written up to a thousand books in my head, scribbled them out daintily signed and sealed the manuscripts posting them to some eager editor who awaited with baited breath. In reality I am still challenged by the quirks of constructing a novel, be it fiction or non,manuscripts are masterpieces of the mind, they are gateways into the soul , confiscating curtains which seal and barricade the mind from the truth. What you write may be fiction, but there is a part of it that awakens a sleeping Goliath, truth. Why is truth a Goliath, because in the mind as a writer it is so easily bent and folded, then after being worked and reworked , stands David, a shining reckless parable of complex components, yet a deeper truth. The truth is never hollow. It is founded upon stories that the eye whispers to it, and the ears gossip.
Terry and Tommy, funny names for characters in love, but that’s where my journey as a writer began…in dreams. When I couldn’t get to sleep I used to tell myself bed time stories with these two characters that always fell in love after a series of very complicated events. One of them would hate each other from the start, and then over time they would begin to fall for the strengths and the beauty of one another. I was a hopeless romantic as a child, you couldn’t keep me away from the Jude deverauxs, Judith Mcnaught and my addiction Millsand Boons novels. The characters always met in the middle, the characters always fell in love, and their love consumed the busy pages of my notebooks scattered all around my room. Love has its trials and for me it’s trials are the complications of the characters. When I was older I took to inventing my own nuances of love. A 5 ft something fair skinned guy that used to live two streets away from me in the sixth form. I used to scribble love letters to him at the early dawn and directly post them to his letter box, poor guy, beautiful smile. I remember the way his eyes twinkled and the butterflies I felt each time I captured that feeling on the page, then in time, I realised, it was my feeling. It didn’t belong to him because he didn’t feel such a way, I remember the way he walked commandeering the wind, his jacket slicing through air like a blade. He was a beautiful man, but I think I like Shakespeare have always been in love with the idea of being in love. Maybe if you love someone else for a minute you can escape yourself, after all , your attention is elsewhere. Yet in reality we should develop rather than try to escape.
Yesterday I thought about something so frustrating it baffled me. The ideal of love versus it’s realities. Someone I know used to tell me that love itself is chemicals in the brain, signals the body sends, and yet even in my most jaded and awake moments I’d like to believe it’s more than that. For me as an author a writer, someone very passionate, id like to believe it is more compelling than this. It is it’s own animal, with its own story,and less of the scientific and the biology please. Love is expression, of the highest order of the truest self. We unleash a secret part of ourselves, gated and protected, letting the world creep in. We are both with and without form, a noun and nameless, a print, and an invisible stencil upon someone’s heart. When you go through loneliness the ache is so bad, like a starving child in a third world country, you need that human interaction , that depth of conversation, those moments to admire someone separate from you, those moments to let the heat suffocate your sanity. Here’s to love and all its madness.