post-retrograde flow...

this project has begun to write itself.  

it definitely needs polishing; the words aren't where i want them to be, but that's all right.  right now it's about laying the foundation.  drafts, drafting and more drafts ain't nothin but methodology.  

there's an outline now.  it's always been difficult to start with one.  instead, i enjoy letting the work independently shapeshift.  when it tells me what it is, then i can sketch a skeleton. 

if anyone's actually reading this, i know i'm being vague about the specifics.  although i've gotten quite a bit done, it's still gestating.  womb-darkness is the best thing for it.

off for some freewriting...


an aside

dear life,

you are throwin a sista a SERIOUS curveball right now.

i don't think i like it.

i'm trying to accept it. you know i have a bit of a control thing going.

i suppose...i'm just trying to understand. full circle i get. this? this is...beyond that.

gimme a clue?




status report

the project is blossoming.  i'm fairly settled on the topic/tone, a format is emerging, and i've found a good voice.

i've learned to pace myself. i can get really excited about something only to wind up really burned out. i remind myself that i am crafting something, painting a very particular picture.  none of the books i love were kicked out in a month just because.

it will be finished when it's finished, and winter is a fantastic time for gestation.

there is no rush.

this is the part of the game where i congratulate myself for holding on to bits of "nothing" writing, even when i have no clue where it's going to go and it bugs the organizer in me. 'cause this bit of nothing is surely turning into something.

above all: i am grateful.

i thought about working tonight, but i realize i need to deal with some messages from last night, and get into my evening journaling.

plus it's the first full day of my moon cycle, and when that falls on a weekday, i try to take the evening to decompress.  getting too cerebral wouldn't be comfortable.

onward and upward...    


so...it's nanowrimo...

and i will not be writing a novel this month.

i've already committed myself to an inner check-in and a 100 day gratitude exercise beginning in december, so i'm easing into winter in a different way.

but there's a vision taking shape...

however, i did make some micromovements this evening.  might do some actual tweaking / writing / editing this weekend.

chills in the air slow me down considerably.


what am i doing?

so i took another look at "the project" last night, and read a little more Fruitflesh this morning.

all that brought me to this: what am i trying to write, really?

am i capable of writing a novel right now?  should i stick to short stories? i think any ambitious works of fiction would take some real workshopping to come to fruition.

am i fighting a proclivity towards memoir, diarist prose, and/or some kind of instructive / inspirational work? 

maybe i'd be better off kicking out a screenplay?

do i need to mix all of the above into some new stew?  

i'm thinking, not repressing.  still, i wonder what i might be doing since this thing isn't taking any discernible shape or form beyond characters introducing themselves at length.

i've also become aware that i haven't truly tapped into the essence of my writing or my identity as a writer since adolescence.  mainly because i spent so much time trying not to write.  there's some juicy issues in there...  


back to scribbling...


coming home near sunset...

sweet dollop half moon
lounging in
cotton candy sky

for the honeybee
that nearly lit on my hand
at lunch

for seeing through honeyed eyes
even with no explicit reason
for dulcet expressions.

maybe i can finally
touch my own center...

make beauty effortless
effortlessly see myself

effortlessly see...




the man
that looks past
my medicine;

the one
strong enough
to be the fire
in my hearth.


sweet surrender

so...i've been told (again) that i "have a book in me."

thanks, Universe.  i know.  there are several, actually. 

just gotta figure out which words to focus on first.

in the meantime--while also journaling and scribbling here and there--i'm reading Fruitflesh.

i'm not exactly sure whether i stumbled on Gayle Brandeis' website, or someone pointed me there.  but when i noticed it sitting in my amazon wishlist a couple of weeks ago, i figured i'd snatch it up.

typically i don't do well with workshoppy books {i quit too easily}, but this one's different: the kind of book with a texture, scent, feel...it's like instructive poetry.  and i'm a sucker for anything sensual.  she gets me.  

the idea is to read it once straight through, making notes here and there.  once i've done that, i'll work through the exercises i like or think will help my process. i'll post some of them here.

next: Stephen King's On Writing.  my ex gave it to me years ago, and it's been staring me in the face ever since.



i started writing...pretty suddenly, in fact.

the hardest part is that i have no idea where the story is going, or if it's even a story. i could be scribbling some elaborate back story that doesn't even make it to the finished product.  whatever that is.  

i truly don't know.

and that's scary.

i used to stifle myself because i had to have a direction. after a certain age, i did not--for whatever reason--believe in trusting the process or the journey.  no clearly defined "project" meant no writing.

now i'm more willing to let that line that pops up at 3am guide me wherever it's trying to go.  i listen to the characters and transcribe their words; i don't immediately dismiss them because their story doesn't fit into whatever mold i thought i was dealing with.

the beginning is about loss of control.  pure flow...water from a faucet.

micromanagement is for editing.  

so, i've returned to youthful creative habits.  taking breaths and tuning in.  more deep listening than i thought possible...or maybe than i forgot was possible.

let's see where it takes me...


lab work

i've decided that i want my next writing project to be the last one for awhile.

meaning...i want to focus.

i've started many projects, but i don't know that i've ever finished anything beyond a short story.

i'd like to change that.

so while i'm gestating/formulating, this space may turn into a workshop brainstorm drawing board type thing.

i also have a creative playground to fool around in...that might be my primary tool to get the rivers flowing...

let's see what happens. 

current theme song:



we tend to know when our babies ain't made for this world.

from mother mary to mama cissy there have been prayers for understanding, time...

but sometimes it's real from the first.

they too soft.
too good.
too sweet.
too loving.

baby smiles and childish giggles
clouded with worry, concern.

no babies
are made to fight machines
and survive

black babies are no different.

...but we are expected to be.
as if our rattles are made of steel
and we teethe on granite pebbles.

for those of beauty
taken under
and torn asunder...


& the unnamed
and unclaimed
of the streets
and barrios:

for your sake,

may we heal
and know care;

and know love;

and find peace.


void 2

every day
without touch
i feel the vault door
creak closer to closing...

{part 1}



my bliss may not look like yours. 

it may sound strange that i need to remind myself of that, but it's the classic empath trap. hearing and seeing what makes others happy can translate into a vicarious bliss that, once faded, reminds you that you weren't really following your heart, you were noticing someone else's.

and you're back to square one.

most times you don't even realize what's happening...until you crash.


i've been neglectful...

sorry about that.

there's been a lot going on, from 42 days of daily blogging to general life stuff.

but i'm still breathing and what not.

hope to share some inspiration with you soon...




swim good...

[Verse 1] 
That's a pretty big trunk on my Lincoln town car, ain't it?
Big enough to take these broken hearts and put 'em in it
Now I'm driving 'round on the boulevard, trunk bleeding
And every time the cops pull me over, they don't ever see them
And I've got this black suit on
Roaming around like I'm ready for a funeral
Five more miles 'til the road runs out

I'm about to drive in the ocean 
I'mma try to swim from something bigger than me 
Kick off my shoes and swim good, and swim good 
Take off this suit and swim good, and swim good, good 

[Verse 2] 
Got some pretty good beats on this 808 CD, yeah 
Memory seats I'm sitting on stay heated 
I woulda put tints on my windows but what's the difference 
If I feel like a Ghost, no Swayze, ever since I lost my baby 
I've had this black suit on 
Roaming around like I'm ready for a funeral 
One more mile 'til the road runs out 

I'm going off, don't try stopping me 
I'm going off, don't try saving 
No flares, no vest, and no fear 
Waves are washing me (out) 


Don't die



there is time for bliss
for joy.
for celebration.

life is for the living
life is for the living
life is for the living.

even pipes
need release valves.


for the weary

{for you and all of you.}

in that moment
(had i known you)
i'd have held you close,

let your tears water my heart,
as i whispered your worth to you

in a busy restaurant
by a demonstration
of black love.


wise women

{inspiration. something about her gaze...}

very few of us
say everything we know.

more disturbing
is your readiness
to [mis]take our silence
for vapidity.

you cannot profess to protect
what you do not understand.


for women who are 'difficult' to love

still in love with this.

if it's possible to have a theme-poem, i think this might be mine.
you are a horse running alone
and he tries to tame you
compares you to an impossible highway
to a burning house
says you are blinding him
that he could never leave you
forget you
want anything but you
you dizzy him, you are unbearable
every woman before or after you
is doused in your name
you fill his mouth
his teeth ache with memory of taste
his body just a long shadow seeking yours
but you are always too intense
frightening in the way you want him
unashamed and sacrificial
he tells you that no man can live up to the one who
lives in your head
and you tried to change didn’t you?
closed your mouth more
tried to be softer
less volatile, less awake
but even when sleeping you could feel
him travelling away from you in his dreams
so what did you want to do love
split his head open?
you can’t make homes out of human beings
someone should have already told you that
and if he wants to leave
then let him leave
you are terrifying
and strange and beautiful
something not everyone knows how to love. 
- Warsan Shire 


skittles & iced tea

brown boy
not even as big as the other kids

but still a threat to someone...

i can't say i'm trying to make sense of the incident.
i know why it makes "sense". 

if i'm trying to make sense of anything,
it's why we've come this far
to learn so little.

i've spent so much time
trying to get the black men in my presence to relax
even when i know why they can't.

stories like this unravel all my weaving.

i suppose we can only do
what we can
where we can.


hope for the best.


maybe more...


at the moment

yet again i dreamt of kissing a man i didn't really want.
not sure what that means.

energy's elusive

sick of drinking water
even though i'm sure it's making me less sick

and so on

i hope to be back in the swing of things very soon...



When you get tired enough, and you’re willing to sacrifice everything within yourself… The fear just leaves. 
~Erykah Badu

or maybe i'm already there...




lately, there have been many battles.

it's been a long time since i've been this weary.

it's also been a long time since i've felt this strong.

i am resting. building. learning. stretching.

even through tears.

i am the tiger's daughter,
newly named for a nubian lioness.

i know how to rest in the high grass

and wait.

but hunger is a compelling force.

when the time's right
i will pounce
and feast.

expect me.



i have a watery, sweet soul:
calm, cool, collected,
plenty of patience.

most are content to simply swim in the ocean...

but there's fire here, too.

an underwater volcano: quiet, but still active
contained only by the element surrounding me.

my worlds are created deeply, sometimes violently;
built from tsunamis, earthquakes, and lava spouts
seen only by the most skilled and adventurous divers.


a love to last...

working my way up to openly admitting {again} that i long to be loved--not just liked--has been an interesting journey.

even more interesting is that the letter was written almost two years ago to the day...the postscript almost a year ago.

i didn't know it'd been that long.

but, in the interest of continuing to acknowledge and manifest my desires...

I want a Sunday kind of love
A love to last past Saturday night
And I’d like to know it’s more than love at first sight
And I want a Sunday kind of love

I want a a love that’s on the square
Can’t seem to find somebody
Someone to care
And I’m on a lonely road that leads to nowhere
I need a Sunday kind of love

I do my Sunday dreaming,
And all my Sunday scheming
Every minute, every hour, every day

Oh I’m hoping to discover
A certain kind of lover
Who will show me the way

And my arms need someone
Someone to enfold
To keep me warm when Mondays and Tuesdays grow cold
Love for all my life to have and to hold
Oh and I want a Sunday kind of love

I don’t want a Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday, or Thursday, Friday or Saturday
Oh nothing but Sunday oh yea
I want a Sunday Sunday
I want a Sunday kind of love
Sunday, Sunday, Sunday kind of love


miscellaneous: classic pieces from a part-time poet

so, i finally did it. there's a collection of my stuff out there.

read, comment, and tell a friend or five.  

if you'd like to help support my various endeavors, please consider making a small donation.

why the cash?  well, i'm trying to complete my spiritual ordination, take a reiki master training course in the spring, and stock up on supplies necessary for my healing practice.  any money i can push towards those things is a great help, since most of the day job funds are tied up in bills/food/survival. 

you can send donations via paypal to raha.reiki [at] gmail.com.        

and, last but not least, thank you for all the wonderful comments and conversations over the last couple of years. looking forward to many, many more. 

happy reading!