I was born a writer. It doesn’t matter what I do or where I go, I can never change that. I can’t break up with my gift. I’ve tried several times out of frustration and like Kobe and Vanessa, we are still married. My talent remains in tact. Truth be told, writing is my best friend. I will never trust anything outside of a paper and pen. I’m an old-fashioned girl. I fancy school supplies over gadgets. I will always choose the silence of a notebook to liberate my loud mind when the world’s weight feels just a little too heavy and I must scream. I hide out-in-the-open in my words. April is National Poetry Month. Most poets normally do the 30/30 poetry challenge or engage is some sort of activities to strengthen their writing skills. I may engage in the challenge this year for the first time strictly for my enjoyment. However, I wanted to do something else. I wanted to address more Poetry and Politics.
“THERE IS WAY TO MUCH MESS GOING ON. EGO’S ARE FLAMING OUT OF CONTROL, EITHER “CLIQUE UP” OR GET BOOTED, SLING MUD OR SINK IF YOU AREN’T EQUIPPED TO FLOAT… IS IT THAT SERIOUS? POETRY HAS GOTTEN HOLLYWOOD WHERE HOLLYWOOD ISN’T EVEN AT (I’M REFERRING TO THE LOCAL SCENE, NOW). WHAT HAPPENED TO THE DAYS WHERE A POET COULD BE HAVING A BAD DAY AND MAKE YOU FEEL IT? NOT ENLIGHTEN YOU… I MEAN, REALLY MAKE YOU FEEL IT AND MAKE YOU SIGH RELIEF BECAUSE YOU IDENTIFY (THAT’S THE KEYWORD Y’ALL, “IDENTIFY”) WITH WHAT IS BEING SAID. SPOKEN WORDS….YOU ARE THAT POET ON THE MIC BARING THEIR SOUL AND SHARING THEIR TRUTH AND YOU ARE JUST LISTENING… SPOKEN WORD MOVES PEOPLE. HOWEVER, THE UGLY THAT COMES ALONG WITH IT IS DISHEARTENING. I’M STILL ON “BREAKMODE” AND I STILL CAN’T SEEM TO MISS OUT ON FUKKERY UPDATES . IS THERE ANYONE OUT THERE WHO ISN’T TOO “BIG” TO EAT A SLICE OF HUMBLE PIE?”
I published the first Article of this series ” Atlanta: Poetry and Politics in July of 2013. In the article, I spoke about my love for poetry and reasons why I took a hiatus. I called out a little bit of fukkery that goes on with the poetry scene here in Atlanta. As I said before, my intentions were never to offend nor highlight a bunch of negativity; I spoke on the positives as well. I talked about why I love poetry. The purpose of publishing this series of articles is to start some sort of dialogue. A resolution would be great. There is nothing to prove… After I published the first article, the response to it produced other things that bothered me which left me with the question, “Where is the Humility?”
“I hope to never become one of the greedy, the plastic, and uppity
The outta touch with their community
You know, the type that grew up with roaches and then get put on
Now, they don’t know what a roach is…
You know the type to get a rich taste then begin to lose that pure love, that humble flavor
Something reminiscent to those sweet tatta pie that grandma used to put her foot in.
… way back in your genesis
Before the ego began to set in
Before the stench of your sour turned sweet, according to your ghetto philosophy
Cause that B.S. you poppin is over zealous, self righteous and deadass wrong…”
I feel that spoken word is the new Hip Hop in its “grass-root” stages. Spoken word is poetry. So is Hip Hop. Poetry is nothing new. How do you explain song lyrics? It’s not always about the beat and melodies. Spoken Word is the Presentation. You connect more with the words. On rarely occasion, a great session at an open mic will end up leaving you contemplating, ” Was that poetry or church”? What I love about spoken word is that, it is an underground art form that we are watching make it’s way around the world. It is not new. The exposure is new but the art itself is timeless. Just like the exploitation of Hip Hop in a lot of these television commercials, I envision poetry being the sound track to future advertisements and even more. However, I pray that its integrity remains in tact. Some one once told me that “words” are the invisible aspect of the creator. People feel words.
I’m not hating on those who grind
or those who polished to shine,
I just, got a strong distaste for the new ingredient you’re seasoning your art with.
Sometimes that “broke creative” is the best.
Simplistic like those red lips from that Kool-aid jelly jar
You’ve stained your mouth with
When your creativity is on the brink of STARVATION
Now… you’re eating good…
Ballin like a fat cat in ratland that just went HAM.
You started eating good now you outta touch with ya fam…
After reading a few posts and rants (More recently with these Georgia Arts Neo Soul Poetry Awards) , I can’t help but ask: Why do you write poetry? What do you get out of this? What is your goal at the end of the day? More importantly, what’s up with some of these poets in Atlanta that are taking “Hometown Celebrity” to another extreme? I am not referring to every poet who is well traveled, televised multiple times, multi-published and inspire students at various universities all around the world. I am addressing the poets that rarely seem to leave the perimeter, yet they are so self-righteous that they expect you to know who they are and you BETTER purchase a CD from them or else, you will be forever unliked and it will be some sort of petty Hell to pay
Then, you have the poet that is anti-job and solely survives off of their art. What’s up with the shade that some ( not all) of the unemployed poets throw at the other poets who work a 9 to 5. So many poets fall in love with the beauty of this world, lose touch with reality and want to survive solely off of poetry. I am not saying that that isn’t possible, it’s just nearly impossible but you cannot hit your first open mic on a Monday Night, quit your regular 9 to 5 on Tuesday and think that you will “Blow Up” by Friday. It doesn’t work like that. Spoken word is still progressing and isn’t there yet; however, It is getting there. It has all the potential to be there, but it isn’t there… Successful poets such as: Black Ice and Verbal Slick, and Jon Goode, have been doing this for Year; They are knocking down doors. They did not get launched where they are today; overnight. I think that so many poets don’t realize that.
If you are that poet that decides to dedicate your life to your art and do it completely independently of say “F Corporate America” (meaning you that have no steady income=job), then cool, that’s your business. However, don’t demonize and call the working poet an “Uncle Tom” because they are getting a check. Ambition is pointless without realism.
“I ain’t hatin’, I’m just sayin’.
Keep it pimpin, it is what it is.
And na, this isn’t an observation based off your outfit.
It’s based off that nasty vibe, that “Hollywood” spirit you’re carrying
A demon of self entitlement
Because now I see we’re thinking that we’re on Michael Jordan 23 status
When really, you’re the BJ Armstrong...
I cant remember a time when MJ was at the spot bummin niggas for a ride or a two for three deal on CD’s….
But I ain’t hatin’… I’m just sayin’… ..
And people fukk wit ya poetry B, but that nastitude u sport is so uninviting.
Mentally, some of these niggas livin’ lovely. But the reality is kinda smokey. Something looks a little fraudulent to me”
In the first Poetry and Politics article I made mention of the drama that goes on at some open mics that discourage a lot of poets from speaking. I am referring to the “List Bumping” problem that has been going on for too long. All I have to say is: Stand your ground, do not let anyone silence your voice or take your words from you. Everyone who does poetry in Atlanta is not trying to join the “Poetry Illuminati.” Some people get a high simply off of releasing on the mic or hearing someone else release about something that they can identify with. I have literally watched poetry save lives in more ways than one. I have watched poetry heal. I have watched poetry make people purge and release spiritual toxins from their lives. There is power in Spoken Word.
SN FROM KHARMA:
For the folks who are trying to throw me in drama by screwing around my words from the first Poetry and Politics, DON’T DO IT… THANKS FOR READING.
Poetry and Politics III COMING SOON