BANG

Disclaimer: This is best watched. Just imagine “Point” is portrayed with fingers as a gun.

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Point…and shoot. Point…and shoot.

He learned from an early age

an important lesson about survival

as he wondered up and down the streets

of East Dallas, or was it Mesquite?

And as he gradually climbed

he was ready to earn every single nickel and dime

he could…

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Point…and shoot. Point…and shoot.

With each clip he manages to slip

further and further down the rabbit hole.

And as he stole another soul,

his presence grew in the nightmares

of a youngster who was living not far from there.

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Point…and shoot. Point…and shoot.

With each day and each week

crawling by, the youngster’s parents lose more sleep

as the snap, crackle, and pop announces his name

throughout the neighborhood.

With these disturbing occurrences, it was understood –

by the parents – that they needed to address

the situation…

after the confrontation

with the neighbors his an-ger

rose steadily until…

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Point…and shoot. Point…and shoot.

He waited around the corner

for the youngster

and introduces his fist to  stomach,

cocks back his gun, covers the mouth and…

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Point…Point…Point…

He looks into my eyes as I try

to make sense, gasping and panting for air

while he stands there warring with the unfair

predicament…

Even though he walked away

all…those…years ago…

my mind tends to stray back to that day

wishing I knew how to unload a few clips

of my own. I’ve dreamed of plugging him.

I thought about the others he bestowed pink slips

to as I purchase my whistle,

imbuing each and every missile

with each and every emotion I could muster

as I use this clot buster

and burst through the ignorance

to impart my brilliance

through him, you, her,

hell, it’ll be a massacre!

See my mission is to dispel preconceived

notions and cultivate the masses

with my actions,

so I challenge you to watch me as I…

Point…and shoot.

24 hours of Poetry

This past weekend provided another new experience for me in several different areas:

1) First time I was in a French-speaking nation (Belgium).

2) First time since college I had the chance to perform outdoor in front of complete strangers.

market river

3) First time to be surrounded by so many poets from several nations (usually it’s just the locals) and it provided me a chance to get a feel for the different kinds of styles these poets possess (German, Belgian, French, Italian, Turkish, Spanish, and I think some kind of Scandinavian) for a full 24 hours.

With this “poetry retreat” I also came to realize the importance of my poem, the 28th Amendment (if it’s not posted here, then check this video – it’s gotten better, promise!). The more I perform it, the more I feel it resonates within every person that hears and feels it.

For those who aren’t familiar with it, the poem states the importance of unity within the poetry community and pledging our allegiance to continue forward with our craft.

This brings me to my final point, I can’t just rest on what I have written and what I’ve accomplished. I truly feel like I need to continue pushing myself in order to help inspire others.

I will finish my website soon, and am already looking for venues to host writing “classes” and public speaking workshops. Details will come soon!

Bad Date

“Say, you’re not like…black-black…you know?”

She makes this awkward statement,

Unaware of how much of my patience

she’s already testing.

Now, every time someone hits me with this,

they always seem to miss

the social cues such as 1) me shifting ever so uncomfortably in my seat,

2) me shuffling my feet,

3), 4), 5),

I clinch my fists, squint my eyes,

and try with all my might to count to five

before I end up slapping her upside

her head.

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“What do you mean?” I ask.

Knowing damn well that they’re expecting me to wear the very mask

they’ve grown up seeing in the off-chance that their televisions

show a hint of color in between their 24-hour transmissions

of shows

full of people who resemble 50 shades of snow.

“Well, I mean…you’re not like…a nigger, because you don’t rap.”

There it is, the slap

in the face I was waiting for.

This, is when I have to choose which door

to enter. Do I explain the technicality

that most people believe it’s two different words and, in reality,

none of them are restricted to rappin’?

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Should I go on a tirade

to explain it was the actions

of European trade transactions

carried overseas

and people, with rappers, aim to change the negativity

into an endearing, uplifting term crammed into our frequencies?

The problem is, I would likely scare her away.

That’s despite my calm demeanor and trying my best not to say

she’s ignorant more than…hmm five times,

she, like everyone so far, would turn dumb, deaf, and blind,

and will just tell her friends about that angry nigger

she was on a date with.

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“But they always laugh on TV, go figure

I find the one that’s so stiff

(and not in the good way, if you catch my drift).”

You see, these are constant scenarios

I’ve had to deal with, battling multiple types of stereos

stating that there are rules I must abide by

but oddly I am never on the right side

of that thin line.

I thought about walking out.

I wanted to leave, providing absolutely no doubt

that what she said was incredibly stupid

and I’ll feel like I stood strong

after humoring her for so long

but…do you wanna what the honest truth is?

My luck with women hasn’t been so great

and, well, she is pretty so…maybe this isn’t THAT bad of a date?

So Not All My Plans Fail

Usually when it comes to making plans, I’m not really good at them. I suppose this aspect strictly sticks to social plans, because when it comes to writing/performing, everything is going pretty much perfectly.

I can’t recall saying it on here, but after Italy, I stated on Facebook that I might try performing in Vienna, Austria next. I did that and added loads of stages in Germany along with it.

When I returned from that “tour” I said I should move further west next time. Now keep in mind, these were merely me just saying “maybe” or “I should” I wasn’t actively looking for anything specific, I just happened to stumble upon things (for instance I contacted my Italian counterpart and he referred me to these Austrians. Due to me “stalking” a poet in Berlin, I discovered what I’ll mention below).

So with that being said, I am set to fly to Brussels, Belgium to perform in Liege at this 24hr slam poetry event. I hesitated due to it being so “last minute” when I discovered it, but I went ahead and dropped an email and got the go ahead Thursday.

Actually, I think that’s really all I have to say about that, who knows what could come of this! I’m just beyond excited!

In Between Two Nations

From late April up to mid-May, I was traveling back and forth between several German [speaking] cities and Warsaw, Poland, using different forms of travel (trains, too many buses, and an airplane).

I decided to do this due to me quitting my previous job and then obviously found that  I had so much time on my hands. So I selected Vienna, Berlin (for 4 shows), Frankfurt, Karlsruhe, and Stuttgart, all while hosting my own show in Warsaw at the beginning and end of this tour.

What I learned was:

 

The ideal time to do this is during warm weather just in case I have to sleep outside or at a bus/train station. Speaking of sleep, sleeping on buses got old, quick. There were times where I just could not fully stay comfortable any more :(

Germany has definitely embraced slam poetry, and despite it being heavy on comedic poems, there are quite a few very talented folks that have chosen to not follow this path. I met a 17 year old in Frankfurt, it was his first time (and what a stage, around 100+ people were there) performing and whatever he said, I definitely felt it.

Although a good number of these people’s English understanding is a bit high (or higher than in Warsaw for now) it’s still a difficult setting for me to be in. However other poets also suggested it’s partly due to me not focusing on making jokes, as well, which “confuses” the audience.

Never conform. I had a certain strategy when I first went to Frankfurt in November, and due to the constant laughter most poets had the audience in, I decided to try my bus poem that had a funny punch line at the end. A decent poem but it wasn’t strong in comparison to my original strategy. This time, I wanted to spit Time Capsule in each stage, and despite never progressing past the first round (except in Vienna, which was Day 1), I stuck to my “roots” and received multiple praises saying how good that poem really is.

It was a great learning experience, all the connections I’ve made and the parties I went to in between shows was pretty cool. I have plenty of great pictures and I think I might know how to balance things out for the next time I travel around.

Now I hope something comes of all this work.

 

P.S. I met a band in Stuttgart, the singer was interested in getting me to possibly jump on a track or so with them, I should contact them!

Was it Ever America to Me?

I remember these words, three,

the spark of everyman’s dream.

A simple pioneer on the plain

sought out a home where he himself is free

(was it ever America to me?).

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The welcoming arms of Liberty

fast from the schemes of kings.

A place for many to attain

land away from conniving tyranny

(it never was America to me).

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Opportunity is real and life is free,

but better if it could be

possible to bring what it once claimed

and provide equality into the air we breathe

(there was nothing equal for my people
in their math not freedom in this “Land of the Free”).

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There confusion residing within the

down trodden, underprivileged community

argues against the established aims.

That’s when it was asked of me:

“Say, who do you think you are?”

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I am the First who didn’t know

land was something one could own.

I am the Last Bottle threatening to arrive

and encourage the last of the First to for

as he remains stuck in his reserved sanctuary,

watching the rain wash away his war paint.

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I was kidnapped, I was sold

and others exploited my soul

(who am I kidding? They’re still doing it).

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I am anger, I am pain.

These notions have infested my brain

for the better part of three centuries

and still, they ignore me.

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Yet, I remember these words, three.

It rings true in their speech and their coverage,

in their dismissive labels slapped on every time

I refuse to die quietly.

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Oh yes, these words, three.

But how can it be America

if I was never allowed to “Let Freedom Ring”?

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