I saw this video and just had to share it. It reveals our hair history starting in Africa before the slave trade and ending with today’s styles and trends.
Thank you Chime (HairCrush) for making this video.
Does poetry still matter? Does it have a significant place in our everyday lives? Does it make us see the unseen and feel the unknown? How do you think most would answer?
I’ve always enjoyed poetry. In the beginning, because I was just a kid, words that rhymed were the best words to read. As I got older, and my thoughts wandered, words that made me feel something special became the best words to read.
Poetry has the power to change lives because it tells the story of the human heart. Poems are the kind of urgent and comforting storytelling we desire every day. Poetry matters to protestors in Ferguson, New York and now Baltimore, to name a few. It matters to survivors in Nepal trying to find new ways to express their frustrations and to the little girl in the Congo who discovered who she is and why her language sounds like a song. As humans we hunger for ways to express ourselves and we speak to our most human voice to create new shapes and sounds.
While at Morgan State I read Nikki Giovanni’s poem “Housecleaning” and realized I needed to clean my house too. At that moment poetry became very important to me and I started writing to find my voice and voice my frustrations about everything from school to friends to family. When Morgan gave me an honorable mention certificate at an award ceremony for a poem I wrote I realized someone eventually heard me.
Years later I would become book publicist, friend and sorority sister to Nikki Giovanni. Who knew I would take her career to a bright new level? I didn’t.
I missed National Poetry month. It was in April. But here are just a few of my favorite poems by poets you may or may not know. Enjoy!
I always liked housecleaning
even as a child
I dug straightening cabinets
putting new paper on shelves
washing the refrigerator
inside out and unfortunately this habit
has carried over and I find
I must now remove you
from my life.
We Real Cool
We real cool. We
Left school. We
Lurk late. We
Strike straight. We
Sing sin. We
Thin gin. We
Jazz June. We
This is Just to Say
I have eaten
that were in
you were probably
they were delicious
and so cold
-William Carlos Williams
Madam and The Rent Man
The rent man knocked.
He said, Howdy-do?
I said, What
Can I do for you?
He said, You know
Your rent is due.
I said, Listen,
Before I’d pay
I’d go to Hades
And rot away!
The sink is broke,
The water don’t run,
And you ain’t done a thing
You promised to’ve done.
Back window’s cracked,
Kitchen floor squeaks,
There’s rats in the cellar,
And the attic leaks.
He said, Madam,
It’s not up to me.
I’m just the agent,
Don’t you see?
I said, Naturally,
You pass the buck.
If it’s money you want
You’re out of luck.
He said, Madam,
I ain’t pleased!
I said, Neither am I.
So we agrees!
With Nikki Giovanni during one of the many book tours I set up.
I was happy to have met Edward Lewis co-founder of Essence Communications while on tour promoting his new book titled “The Man From Essence.”
Edward is a graduate of the University of New Mexico and is from the Bronx, New York.
I am showing Edward my feature story in Essence.
All smiles with Edward. I asked him to autograph this page. I have additional copies in our wedding album.
A fun evening with the girls.
I have used several natural hair care products in my quest to find the perfect product. But now I am over experimenting. I discovered doing less is more and keeping it simple helped a lot. So out of all the stuff I tried I put together a (short) list of my favorite natural hair care items. Check it out below.
Qhemet – My hair enjoyed this vegan and vegetarian product line. Qhemet left my curls manageable and soft. Some of the products are vegan and for me that was truly a plus.
Kinky-Curly – This line’s leave-in conditioner “Knot Today” is fantastic. I had soft conditioned curls for days.
Raw Eggs – Yup raw eggs! I use at least two raw eggs with each shampoo to provide a natural source of protein. Because my hair is dry I apply the eggs to my hair with a conditioner. If I don’t the eggs will stick. And I never leave the eggs on for penetration purposes. As soon as the eggs are applied and swirled around I rinse them out. Eggs will stick to your hair and it is hard to remove.
Castor Oil - My hair loves thick oily castor oil. First, when applied, it stretches the length of my hair so I like that. It offers moisture and shine that lasts. It may build up faster but that’s okay. A simple rinse while in the shower will do.
Shea Moisture’s Jamaican Black Castor Oil - My hair loves every product in this entire line. Moisture, condition, softness, shine, curls you name it, this line provides. Fantastic!
Living with confidence is difficult to achieve and it’s extra tricky if you brought insecurities from your childhood into your adult life. Many of us do just that but we are not aware of it. If the negativity isn’t caught and fixed, it can turn into unhealthy behaviors such as overeating, alcohol and drug abuse or mental and physical abuse to various people.
So to stay confident and have a healthy lifestyle I follow the steps below that help me keep it all together.
Do something that brings you pleasure. What makes you happy? Does it bring a certain satisfaction to you by just thinking about it? When you do whatever it is that brings you pleasure, does doing it feel effortless? If so, then keep that activity alive.
I am sure I am about to embarrass the Women’s Liberation Movement but I get pleasure from taking care of my house, dog and husband. I enjoy baking, cooking, blogging, exploring new adventures, taking care of my health, hair and beauty and conversing with family and friends. I will continue to do these things and more as I travel through my life with confidence.
Be true to yourself. Do not set your personal or career path in a direction based on what others want for you. If you can dream it, you can live it. I have finally come to terms and accepted that the Universe wants me to have my own business. I experienced a lot of unnecessary corporate drama working for someone else (I am still removing all the knives from my back) and it is high time I start to call my own shots. My husband and I have a business. I would rather spend my time expanding our business instead of someone else’s. It took a long time for me to be true to myself and admit that working for someone else is not where the Universe wants me to be. Once I developed the confidence to move on, my space felt better, and I realized that space is truly what I need.
Stay on course and persevere. No matter what you might be facing, now or ahead of you, as you move forward in your quest to accomplish your goals and dreams, you must stay on course and persevere. As you set out to achieve your goals and your dreams, be aware: you must have thick skin. You must possess sheer determination and be willing to do whatever it takes to get you where you want to go. Once that confidence is in place insecurity will not be an option and failure will not be a word to use when you seek to reach your ultimate goals and dreams.
As Venus Williams said, “You have to believe in yourself when no one else does – that makes you a winner right there.”
I received comments and emails from readers asking what happened to my regular blog posts. I was surprised and happy to hear from you guys inquiring about topics I like to share.
I cut back on writing posts because I have not been motivated to tell a story. I also thought I wasn’t reaching anyone because I hardly receive feed back. Now that I know that is not the case I feel a sudden urge of enthusiasm to share.
So with that, I am asking you guys to provide me with topics. Don’t be shy! Any topic that comes to mind – hair related, health related, beauty related, about me related – let me know and I will feature it. Promise!
Two strand twists bantu knot-out.
I keep my box braids in for eight weeks and then I take them out. My hair can’t take it any longer then that.
The funny thing is my hair feels dry but my scalp still possesses the castor oil I applied a few days ago.
I have to put together a good moisturizing treatment this Easter weekend and figure out my next hair-style.