Friday, October 20, 2006


I wrote poetry before I wrote anything else. It was middle school, seventh grade, and I would scribble poems in the margins of my science workbook. My science teacher gave me validation when she told me to keep writing and to not let anything or any one deter me from my love of the written word. I am eternally grateful for the kindness and encouragement she gave me and the passing grade in a science class that I had no interest in being in.

The Naked Truth

Can you see me behind the shadows
of who I want you to know?
And if it’s me you think you see,
how can it be that what I know about me and what I show,
gets lost in the not so black and white gray area of
my truth and your truth and the real truth?
And if it’s me you think you see,
how can it be that you love me so
and still know that the naked truth
of who I am and what I be,
is lost, even to me?

Been To The Promised Land

Been to the Promised Land
on the sweat of your brow,
riding the shadowy mist of a stolen kiss
and promises of what we could be,
should be, once had been.
Been to the Promised Land
on the whisper of your breath,
the line of your lips, and
words never to be spoken again.
Been to the Promised Land
wrapped beneath the weight of your arms,
the heavy of your limbs,
and the memories of what once was,
now long since gone,
‘cause homes no more,
doors been closed, keys long lost,
But that’s okay,
Because I’ve been to the Promised Land...


history flutters along the curves of my ethnicity
born in shades of what had been
and what is yet to be...
i am image of the women who once were
and the woman i will become
i cry tears of understanding
streams that puddle in pools of of longing at my feet
blessed is the rhythm of my walk
that recites tales of past and present footsteps
shadowing my grandmother’s deeds
i am image
of the woman i once was
and the women i will become
i know the me you think you see
but better still is the me i have yet to be
for i am wrapped in the curves of my ethnicity
born in shades of what once was
and what is destined to be...

Girl In The Window

She regards the reflections...that pass beneath her window...where old men...whisper in he direction...and young boys...yell loudly for all to hear...before mothers...can pinch flesh....that hungers...for fathers...or something else...before the sun...disappears...and uncertainty...drapes the street...

She regards her brother’s cries...for the ice-cream truck...and her sister’s plea...for one more turn...of the jump rope...when double dutch...and the tingling cold...of Good Humor...carve the reflections....of where she is...and she wonders...if other girls...hear the same voices...and see the same shadows...that baby blue mini the beauty the videos...and if other girls...warm the window...under the sun...before uncertainty...drapes the street...

She regards herself...and dreams...about dark golden cars...with armor of denim...and leather...who climb the fire reach the window...where she sits...and she is a moment...of beauty...where she can sit...under the sun...and regard...herself...

IMAGE CREDITS: "The Naked Truth" by gwendolyn E. redfern; "Eve" by Olivia Gatewood; "Face II" by gwendolyn E. redfern; "Girl In Window" by Antonio Roberts

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank God for Mrs. Toppo!