It was.


It was.

From the moment I put that tape in my VCR I knew I was getting something that would excite me. Something that wouldn’t bore me like the rest of my 12 year old friends.

I was 13,  basically a grown woman. I had lumps and humps and I had that bothersome brawd that liked to jack my back up and mess up my bed once a month so I was a whole woman, basically, right?

Didn’t matter, I had them feelings, them physical feelings. I knew it wasn’t right for my age but I didn’t care. My body knew what it wanted and I knew this tape I got out my parents cabinet was the closest thing I’d get to it. I’d had the moments at midnight watching skin-a-max and show-time but this was XXX-splicit, Full Frontal. Pandora’s box was WIDE open. NOTHING to be left to the imagination

I saw. I liked. I came.

I watched the tape over and over for the next year until my momma found it. I got sloppy one day and napped after the fap without stopping the tape. Nothing went to sleep on its on back then, except me. But she never saw the ladies I watched diving only boring hetero hammering so the conversation was limited to scolding and why it was inappropriate. With a dash of religious purity to guilt me, but I KNEW I enjoyed what I saw. It wasn’t new, not even taboo.

I wanted a woman. Not just a fem either. Tall, thin, fat, thick, white, brown, black. A nice set of lips and hips and I was hooked. I didn’t show it but I never had to hide it either. Going to an all girl high school came with perks. My new friends could slide thru without question. I kept a skirt on hand, I liked my boyfriends but they just were too hard sometimes. I liked softness. I liked men and women.

My sexuality did not need discovery. It was

Not a question
Not a conflict
Not a debate
Not a fight
Not a family intervention
Not a ritual or prayer
Not a protest
Not a cry out

Just another tween watching porn they found and snuck to watch.

So when asked about the moment I found my sexuality I say,

it just was.

Squishy


Squishy–when he hears that sound
he stops
mid stroke
to relish in it

It’s a goal
that you don’t go after
but one that leaves you
feeling accomplished on meeting

Squishy, may not be
the most accurate
phonetic interpretation
it’s like batting a good hit and
hearing the perfect crack from the ball
hitting to the outfield is reward enough
but that sound
creates the memory
it’s the music of the timing
and the cherry on top

I know I’m not the lover
I once was
I’ve made it about him but
it has nothing to do with him
I’m closed, shut up and down and
inside myself so deeply
I am without direction
on giving more of me
I feel like
the only thing I can give him is
Squishy

The moment
he slows his movement
pauses his mind
continues his thrust
to create the sound
he is in it

I feel the stroke
The sound was at first
a consequence
until his rhythm changed
he changed in me
then it became—
Squishy

It was no longer the ins and outs
I got lost in it
I no longer wanted to direct him
on how to love me
he was getting better
better than me

I had not opened myself
to receive him
only get what I ask
and take what I want
taking love selfishly

I still think
we are issues to read
we have more sounds to make and
more moments to make—
Squishy

After We Ain’t We


First page is all you

I wait

I want you to taint
to dirty, to ravage, to take
to leave
alone to my words
always more than what I do
because I spend more time thinking
than doing what I should do

that’s why I admire you
you follow thru
what you want
you always get
even if it has to work hard
to be good enough for you

If I have to let go
of  what I think I find comfort in
I do
because this clause,
I changed for you

I don’t own or control
I just let what we do, be
I’ve refused to love
to open up
to share, to love you

with the light in my face
owning everything I say
wrong and weak
I see through me in you

I still wonder why you deal with me
while I play and have no idea of the game
So, I let go
and hope to be
what love will have me
and if love will love me
I will be what it tells me

You’ve become what words said to me
couldn’t motivate me to be
I can open myself
and be Tyra
no questions
of who has questions or queries
just what I like
and knowing you accept it
makes others love me

Should you stop or believe
you can find a possibility of love
without me
make it

because I will always
be in the life of your heart
even after
we ain’t we

Limes for Detox


I’m detoxing right now. Laying off the sauce or oil, depending on the generation you’re from.

I’m a millenial technically but I did grow up with a floor model TV in the living room and a black and white 13 inch so I’m “transgenerational”. Half my generation is drinking themselves to death and the other half is nagging them to death with alkaline water, gluten free bread and fake meat that fails at everything meat succeeds at except for being an over processed shitty substitute for nutrition. No shade to the vegans.

I exist in both halves. I drink all weekend and alkalize all week.

As apart of my weekly detox, I make a tea tonic, of

  • 1 nub of turmeric
  • 1 nub of ginger
  • a dash of pepper
  • honey to taste and
  • lemon or lime

Limes are best. You can make tonic on Mondays and take tequilla shots on Friday. Balanced diet.

Limes detox for all intoxicants even infatuation. That’s my dope. I’m an infatuation fiend.

I like to like. An object of affection to fawn over. What better mind game is there? I like the game of getting. I’ve had notebooks with details of each crush I had as a tween. They had stats just like my baseball cards: smart, funny, creative, talkative, pretty teeth, soft hands, long hair, nice voice, athletic. I thought I was a player or wanted to be one but the jigg was up when I find one that had the ideal stats and liked me back! Brawn, beauty and brains.

The first infatuation crush was 4th grade. A beautiful brown boy with a sweet smile and a brain that threw sarcasm like darts to a bullseye. Rahman, if you say it how he says it. I’m a sucker for  unique names. I don’t know why this boy made me smile, flutter in excitement, talk incessantly or do all I needed for his admiration but I was hooked on the feelings. Even though he was mean with his sarcasm, made fun of unique classmates and complained A LOT, I liked him. I was like that well into high school. I’d lock my eyes on my “type” and get way more than I bargained for. Nothing could compare to the infatuation feelings. Someone to be happy with and for someone I could make happy, someone that was happy with me.

For a clean slate of happiness, price you pay is really high. Making my happiness dependent upon the object of infatuation proved to be costly.

Infatuation delusions and a need to please make a bad cocktail. My habit led me to so many delusions of love. Sometimes I sobered up other times I kept on coming back. I came back to one over and over until 8 years ago I found myself detoxing from the delusion of me loving someone who tolerated but never embraced me. I met him at 18, young, tender and starry eyed. He was 25 “mature”, established and rigid.

I respected his rigidity as a sign of maturity and wisdom not fragility, judgement and insecurity. He was cute, older and different from all the young boys that wanted to sell or smoke weed all the time. He was the poster man for responsible young adult. He was handsome, with a low cut full beard, I’ve been into this look since 2000 people. Tall, but everyone is taller than me.  Thinner but not frail, and neat.  Detroit impresses style upon every being in its borders, especially black men and he was able to accomplish style without kitchy fads. He was his own person, his identity wasn’t attached to popular culture.  Very neat and clean in appearance from hairline to pant crease. Then the music. He played Dilla and Slum, The Roots, Erykah, Pharcyde, no man under the age of 25 I had dated was up on Soul Quarians. Or knew The Score was a classic. He was original. He was a classic.   He was the resume and picture of my ideal guy. He fit but nothing with us ever sit. He remained ideal but had to be convinced to that I was. Every major life cycle event I pretty much felt abandoned by him. From getting robbed to needing money for tuition it was never convenient for him to support me. I kept on though cuz I was hooked on em.

(Brevity on lack of support)

Misinterpretations of obvious marks of disinterest led to a draining episodic 7 year commitment challenge. As a fiend it’s obvious I struggled with my own emotional damage independent of excess provided by this relationship. It was never the feeling of abandonment but the sobering moment of when he refused to help me slice limes during the 2008 NBA playoffs that slapped me awake.

It was a typical weeknight for me. I’d come home after work and class ready to cook for my love. I’ve always loved cooking for my lovers. He was in the living room watching TV and I was in the kitchen doing the most. I had asked him to come to the kitchen, without reason. He was unresponsive so I repeated expressing my need to put urgency to it, also firm to show it was crucial enough to pause the game. Yes I said pause. The game was live but the new technology of DVR made way for pausing live TV. He finally answered snapping “The game on!”

It was. For the last 7 years, we’d both been tuned to it.  I was tuned into making his favorite cuisine, Mexican, which meant digging up creative recipes. I’d dig up these recipes on breaks at work and anticipate his delight in them while in class. This night had a mango papaya salsa that taught me I was allergic to real papayas.  My eczema was a constant enough condition that kept my hands riddled with tiny cuts and and bumps so adding an irritant like papaya was gasoline to fire. So, Slicing limes was like throwing in rubbing alcohol. Actually, that’s exactly what it felt like, pouring alcohol on an open wound. Same feeling when he refused to come help. He was tuned into what was most important to him, like always.

I’d have these small fires in my life and he’d turn to the game while they burned. Funny it took lime juice to detox me from the infatuation of a lover who didn’t want to support me.

I condescended him with “Why can’t you pause it? What’s the big deal?”

He responded “It’s not the same as live.

Dude I get it, sports fans, I get it live action but it’s not like you’re leaving a game to watch the replay later, it’s on TV, you will return to it with a delay of maybe 10 minutes. Like why is this so high stakes, you betting, winning or playing? I still don’t understand that emotional attachment people have to their teams that makes them ignore the rest of their lives for it but I digress.

I didn’t want to argue, I was tired of arguing and beggin him to help me. I had to beg him for everything from a place to stay when I lost my job, to a loan for tuition in my last semester of school, WHEN we LIVED together. So I cut those limes, by my damn self. I had been doing most things without his assistance but he’d been accustomed to mine. It wasn’t going to change especially not during Eastern Conference playoffs. The Pistons and The Sixers were entirely more important than my burning hands, mind you for HIS favorite food, but I’m HAPPY to cook for him. He is my lover.

I’m chopping away, in silence with a look to burn through dangerous neighborhood glass. My silence must have struck him. Not only because I refused to argue but also because I sing and hum while I cook. The bliss that gives humming its tune had ceased. My intoxication was broken. I was focused. I didn’t need him.

I could slice my own limes. I could detox myself. I no longer needed to give energy to my intoxicant.

He ended up coming to the kitchen once a commercial is on, asking what I need, almost fumbling to help, AFTER I sliced all the limes. I sliced through the burn and brewed over all the reasons I was in that relationship, all of the ways he showed he didn’t care and all of the ways I was intoxicated with loving him and neither of us embracing loving me. My mind had built a flow chart of why I was slicing limes with cut hands that I’d just presented to myself for my MFA dissertation in me. I’d mastered my happiness and the infatuation of loving him was gone, cold turkey (burgers), with lime papaya and mango salsa.

All Spice


See I was wit a nigga who wanted to mute me
Silence me
Keep me quiet
Blur my identity

I was too loud, too strong, too black, too big
and too comfortable being who I was
I needed to be muddled
reminded to be a lady
corrected in my steps
I couldn’t make dirty jokes
Poke fun at his mistakes
Own my past OR
Acknowledge my failures 

He was stuck in shame
Male Fragility
So, I had to join him
I had to walk under his cloud of insecurity
My happy face couldn’t brighten his day
I had to live in his sadness
He kept holding me standards he’d never even meet
I was too much of me but never enough of what I should be

I tried to run the mile
Jump the wall
Dot the I’s
And cross the T’s
But I was never really good at editing
I was RAW, AUTHENTIC, ORIGINAL, exactly who I wanted to be.
I only knew how to live by my passions
Not by the rules of regurgitated copies.
So, I had to leave.

I could no longer compromise the salt of who I was
For the way he tried to season me
I could only live like spice that comes with good things
See I’m like garlic, ginger, turmeric and chillis
I will burn your tongue
Strike your senses
AND heal your body

I am not bread to be dipped in oil
or spread with butter
I am not white, starchy or bland
I am cinnamon, cloves, vanilla, and nutmeg
I am the all spice you add to your pie
because without me
you’re just apples, butter and crusty
and that’s pretty fucking lame

So stop diluting my flavor with watered down expectations
My nigga, I am not flour, yeast and eggs
I am ALL SPICE
I AM NOT TO BE TAMED!

Pretty for Approval

Should they not find me valuable or approve of my beauty in it's true essence they may find themselves lost and forever longing because they will never see my beauty as long as they are looking for it in the prosthetics of pretty.